[Sca-cooks] Wine Question

Terry Decker t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net
Tue Feb 12 14:54:19 PST 2008

Rheinwein and Burgundy have a fairly long history, but the real question is 
are those wines in period the same as they are today.  The fact is, there is 
no way to be sure.  There is however, probably a continous process of 
improvement from the Roman period through today.

We know from Tacitus's Germania that in the 1st Century wine was imported 
into France and Germany and that this is supported by the numbers of wine 
amphorae that have shown up in various archeologcal digs.  Viticulture in 
the region probably began in the last half of the 1st Century and was well 
established by the 4th Century.

The city of Augustodunum was established in the Burgundy region in the 1st 
Century.  The first known reference to wine being produced in Burgundy is 
from an account of a visit by Constantine to Augustodunum in 312 CE.

While there is no direct evidence (that I've found) for Rhine viticulture in 
the Roman period, Mosel (a tributary to the Rhine) viticulture is mentioned 
in Ausonius's Mosella (370 CE).  Rhenish Rieslings can be dated to the 15th 
Century and are likely to have been cultivated much earlier.  You might 
check out this paper on the Rhenish wine trade in the 14th to 16th 
Centuries:  http://www.helsinki.fi/iehc2006/papers3/Weststrate.pdf

Interesting stuff.  Thanks for asking the question.  I haven't located the 
account of Constatine's visit or Mosella yet, but I have no reason to think 
the references aren't valid.


> Anybody out ther have a good resource for cheing on wine types etc... and 
> their "periodness"... I'm looking specifically for info on Rhine and 
> Burgundy.
> -Ardenia 

More information about the Sca-cooks mailing list