National Drink Wine Day
National Drink Wine Day is an unofficial holiday which is celebrated annually all over the U.S on February 18th. The purpose of this day is to celebrate the joy and health benefits of wine. After all, wine is a beverage which has played an important role in human history for thousands of years. Besides, drinking this beverage has also been shown to risk all kinds of different health ailments – everything from liver disease to heart disease, if it’s consumed in moderation. So pop open a bottle of your favorite red, white or rose and enjoy a beverage that is considered to be an integral part of the human experience.
The History of Wine
Wine making can be traced back over 9,000 years by Archaeologists to about 7000 BC in China. This is when the Chinese began making an alcoholic beverage from wild mountain grapes. However, even archaeologists admit that this probably isn’t the earliest time when humans began making wine. Scientists actually believe wine making and consumption goes back even further than that. It’s believed that wine was first discovered when early humans consumed fermented grapes for the first time.
While early wine making roots may be lost to antiquity, it is known that wine would become an important part of Egyptian life. It was a part of trade between Egypt and Canaan and was an important part of religious life. From Egypt, wine and wine making spread all over the world.
Around 880 B.C., the Greeks began experimenting with wine manufacturing and, as a result, they began to perfect it. During this time, wine became not only a symbol of religion and trade but also one of good health. In fact, wine was so important to the Greeks, they named a god in honor of this beverage. And this god was named Dionysus. As the Greeks began to colonize other areas around the Mediterranean, they began taking their wine with them. It was around this time they colonized the southern portion of Italy, thereby introducing wine to the region.
Around 146 B.C., Rome conquers Greece and they make wine their own, eventually making it a big part of their culture. They even renamed the Greek god Dionysus to the Roman god Bacchus. As the Romans grew in military power and began to outstretch their armies all over Europe, Roman grapevines ended up traveling with them. These grapevines appeared everywhere from France and Germany to Italy and Spain. Wine making had begun to really take root.
In 380 A.D., the Roman Empire adopted Catholicism. During this period, wine would become an important part of the Catholic sacrament, so it was necessary to spread the cultivation of grapevines and the production of wine. Catholicism began to spread across Europe and as it did, wine went along for the ride.
By the Middle Ages, wine was well established and could be found just about anywhere in Europe. Which is probably why it’s no surprise that the beverage was introduced to Mexico and Brazil by the conquistadors during in the late 15th century. Wine began to spread all over the Americas during the 16th century as Spanish missionaries spread from Mexico to Chile to Argentina. While the French claim Canada as their territory during this time, it wouldn’t be until the 17th century that they began establishing permanent colonies and vineyards in the region.
The French also imported grapevines into the state of Virginia in the early American colonies but they didn’t take off quickly because of the region’s Puritanical roots. Despite this, however, wine making did eventually spread along the Eastern Seaboard of what would become the United States. Wine production in the United States really didn’t take off, however, until Thomas Jefferson – the first Minister to France and future U.S. President – becomes enchanted with French wines and decides to bring French grape cuttings to Virginia with the aim of creating an American wine that would equal the quality of French wines. These humble beginnings would then lead to the establishment of the American wine industry.
Today, wine is enjoyed on every continent on the planet – with the exception of Antarctica (unless some of the scientists who live there has brought wine with them). And wine’s popularity is at an all-time high. The United States alone consumes over 900 million gallons of wine per year – a number which rises with the passing of each year.
History of National Drink Wine Day
While the history of wine is pretty well established nowadays, it would appear that the history of National Drink Wine Day has been lost. Most likely, this holiday was either started by an anonymous wine enthusiast or someone working in the wine industry.
Celebrating National Drink Wine Day
National Drink Wine Day is the perfect day to open up your favorite bottle of wine and enjoy it with your friends or with your dinner. As you toast your friends and family members, you can then contemplate the thousands of years of history that stands behind this marvelous little alcoholic beverage. And if you want, you can also use the hashtag #NationalDrinkWineDay on all of your social media accounts.