As you may have seen on my Facebook page, last week I started a free online wine course through the University of Adelaide called Wine101x The World of Wine. Now I’m not much of a reader as I tend to get sidetracked by everything else bar what I am supposed to read (‘bar’ being the exact thing that pulls me off course!). So therefore instead of just reading through my weekly lessons for the next 6 weeks I thought I would blog about it and share the knowledge/strategically drill the info into my brain.
From week 1, I thought it would be interesting to look at the terms ‘Old World Wine’ and ‘New World Wine’ and what the heck they mean to everyday wine drinkers like ourselves. I’ve been meaning to blog about the topic for sometime, but yet again I have been sidetracked 🙂 To make it easy, I have put together some bullet points below to help you understand what the heck the old and new world are when it comes to wine.
Old World Wine vs. New World Wine
- These terms refer to wine regions around the world
- The terms traditionally reflect the differences in winemaking and viticulture as well as encompassing the soil, climate and terrain of a region, otherwise known in the wine world as the ‘terrior’ of a region
The Old World Wines = Tradition
- Generally Old World Wine refers to wines made in Europe
- Old World Wine is called exactly that because its cultural roots date right back to the Roman Empire. Most of these regions were where the techniques to make, store and distribute wine all began and have been passed down via generation after generation to today
- Old World Wine regions typically include: Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, Austria, Germany, Greece Hungary, Israel, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Croatia, Cyprus, Switzerland, England and Macedonia
- The wine coming out of the Old World typically have various rules and laws they must stick by for wine production for instance Denominazione di Origine Controllata in Italy & Appellation d’Origine Controlee in France which limits how creative wine makers can get
- You’ll find some winemakers in the ‘New World Wine’ regions like to make their wines in an ‘Old World Wine’ style
- In terms of flavour profile, an Old World Wine can ‘typically’ be explained as…
earthy, elegant, tannic and full of that terrior-ness!
The New World Wines
- Therefore New World Wine is the other side of the bottle, these regions are fairly new to wine production (maybe not in our lifetime, let’s say in the last 100 years, but they’re new as in they don’t have history dating back to the Romans!)
- New World Wines regions haven taken the traditional techniques and ways from the Old World and made them their own – made it work for them in their environments
- Therefore you’ll find winemakers in the new world like to push boundaries and experiment – the mad scientists of the wine world perhaps
- Alongside the above, winemakers in the new world are using new and improved technology to make simple tasks more efficient and less prone to disaster for instance moving to screw cap rather than cork
- New World Wine regions typically include: Australia, New Zealand, USA, Argentina, Chile, South Africa, China, India, Uruguay, Brazil, Mexico and Canada
- In terms of flavour profile a New World Wine can ‘typically’ be explained as…
fruit-forward, oaky, lush and full of booze!
At the end of the day, the best thing to do is grab a few Chardonnay’s or Cabernet’s or whatever takes your fancy from the old and new world and sit back and compare them! Of course in today’s world the lines are being blurred between the old and the new worlds with many super innovative winemakers out there and I say bring it on! If you make something delicious then that makes me one happy lady. Cheers!