Note from Tycho: To get everyone excited about our newest writer, Wine God, I invited him to educate us all with a few fun facts about wine…
1.) Merlot has always been around as a grape forever. However Merlot was primarily only used as a blending grape in French Bordeaux wines. Merlot was practically unknown to Americans until the 1970s. Louis M. Martini winery released California’s first post-Prohibition bottle labeled Merlot, a proletarian non-vintage, in 1972. In 1982, fewer than 2,500 acres of Merlot were planted statewide, less than now-obscure Rubired and about 1/25th of the acreage of then-leader French Colombard, according to the California Agricultural Statistics Service.
2.) Although red wine can only be produced from red grapes, white wine can be produced from both red and white grapes.
4.) Today, screw caps are replacing corks on more than just the inexpensive bottles. Currently, screw caps seal 75% of Australian wines, 93% of New Zealand wines and 25% of U.S. wines. This number is Predicted to climb even higher next year. The reason that more and more vineyards/wineries are moving towards the screw cap is because potentially one out of every twelve bottles of wine can go bad do to corkage. What is Corkage? Corkage is when a bottle of wine goes bad. How can you tell if a wine has gone bad? It smells like vinegar.
5.) It is a common misconception that all wines improve with age. In fact, more than 90% of all wines should be consumed within one year. The three major collectibles that should age more then 10 years are: a great Chateaux of Bordeaux, the best producers of California Cabernet Sauvignon, and the finest producers of vintage port.