Not long ago, France and California dominated the wine market. Today the diversity of wine offerings is astounding, with highly-respected vintages shipping from Chile, South Africa, Australia, and many other countries. But perhaps the most surprising evolution in winemaking is happening in the U.S. You can find rich cherry wine from Michigan, velvety pinot noir made in Oregon, and sparkling Chardonnay from New Mexico, to name only a few. So on National Wine Day, celebrate by opening a bottle from your home state on May 25 and raise a glass to the wines of America!
National Wine Day - History
U.S. wines make an impression in Paris
For much of the 20th century, wines from America were generally considered inferior to the great European vintages. But at the Paris Wine Tasting, wines from the U.S. made a surprisingly strong statement, leading to a new respect for New World wines.
Infestation threatens worldwide wine production
Grape phylloxera, a type of louse, caused widespread damage to vineyards everywhere, but particularly in France, then the epicenter of international wine production. It took decades to recover.
The popularity of wine grows
Wine production and consumption increased noticeably. During this period, new distillation techniques were introduced to create wines for specific medicinal purposes.
- 4100 BC
Sophisticated wine production in Armenia
Archaeologists discovered evidence of winemaking in an Armenian cave, including cups and jars for holding wine, wine presses, and vats for fermentation, and even grape seeds and vines.
- 6000 BC
Signs of early winemaking found in Eurasia
Although it had been believed that the earliest wines were made around the fourth century B.C.E, much older wine has been found in what is now the country of Georgia.
National Wine Day Activities
America's unique landscapes yield a variety of delicious wines — you can find some of the country's best vineyards in states as diverse as Missouri, Idaho, Texas, Washington, Virginia, Oregon, and New York. If you do plan to go wine tasting on National Wine Day, don't forget to bring along a designated driver!
Pair a different wine with every meal
Wine and food pairings are an art and science with countless variations. Try sipping a glass of wine with each meal (including breakfast!) — the secret is to select a wine that will enhance the flavor of your food. Enjoy a sparkling rosé with your eggs and bacon at breakfast, sip an ice-cold Chardonnay with your Caesar salad at lunch, wash your steak down with a glass of Merlot at dinner, then top it all off with a glass of Port and chocolate cake for dessert!
Cook with wine
Anybody can drink wine—but can you cook with it? In honor of National Wine Day, try adding a dash of Merlot to your red pasta sauce or a splash of Chardonnay to your scallops. Don't be afraid to get creative — and don't forget to pour yourself a glass of wine to accompany your culinary masterpiece.
Take The National Wine Day Quiz
Why We Love National Wine Day
There's a wine out there for everyone
With more than 10,000 varieties of wine grapes grown around the world, it's impossible not to find a wine that suits your tastes or mood. Wine flavors and aromas are as diverse as fingerprints, from fruity to herbal to oak. Wine can contain hints of vanilla, cherry, chocolate, almonds, and even bacon! The options are as endless as your wine glass is bottomless
Wine allows you to travel the world in a bottle
Each bottle of wine tells a unique story. If you close your eyes, wine's aromas and flavors can transport you to faraway lands, giving you hints about the soil and weather the grapes grew in, the landscape of the country the wine originated in, and what was happening in the world at the time the wine was bottled. The best part? You don't even have to get on a plane to travel the world!
Wine is perfect for staying in or going out
No matter what your Friday night plans are—chilling in front of the TV with your cat or bar-hopping with friends—wine is the perfect companion. And no matter how much wine you drink, you always look classy doing it!