hist-brewing: pre-1700's wine recipe

Beth Ann Snead ladypeyton at yahoo.com
Wed Jun 30 05:13:03 PDT 1999

> I challenge anyone to tell me this isn't a
> pre-1700's wine "recipe":
> Ingredients:
>    Grapes
> Procedure:
>    1. Squeeze juice out of grapes into
> narrow-mouthed container,
>       such as a ceramic jug or amphora.

Not quite.  "Squeeze juice into rather large necked
tub" is more accurate.  Amphorae were used simply for
storage after the fermentation was complete.

>    2. Stuff a rag in the top.

Would be a really cool game.  Stuff rag.  Watch rag
pop out top and gracefully float back to ground.
Repeat. %^>

>    3. Wait.

Waiting is period, but the length of time differs
greatly from one century to the next.

>    4. Decant off lees after a month.

Nope.  Rack from primary vat to amphora or cask. 
Decanting off lees(although shown in a 14th cnetury
woodcut) has never been a proven pre-1700's wine
making method.

>    5. Wait some more (optional).

See previous comment about waiting.
>    6. Consume.

Never gone out of style for some reason.%^>
> While this may sound like I'm poking fun, I really
> mean to point out
> that brewing and vinting are *very* different when
> it comes to history.
> Brewing differs from vinting in that it requires
> technology (albeit
> very primitive technology is enough).

When technology took a nose dive around the fall of
the Roman Empire winemaking techniques changed
GREATLY.  I'll argue with anyone that winemaking,
also, involves technology although admitedly less than

  Wine has been
> made pretty much
> the same way for thousands of years 

Absolutely, positively, 100% wrong.  Not all wine was
made from grapes.  Not all wine was made from a single
fruit.  Not all wine was made unadulterated. 
Chaptilization is a late period, yet pre-1700

I think you'd benefit from reading rither Tim Unwin's
_Wine and the Vine_, Turner's _Book of Wines_, de
Villanova's _Book of Wine_, Markham's English
Housewife and Digby's _Closet.....Unlocked..._...Not
to mention _Dionysus; A Social History of the Wine
Vine_ whose author escapes me now.

Beth Ann
Known in the SCA as Lady Peyton 

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