A vineyard is most times described by it’s ‘terroir’, which is French for its sense of location.
This simply refers to that particular geographical as well as geological feature of a vineyard that may influence the taste of the wine it produces.
Generally, a vineyard is a grapevine plantation that is grown most especially for the making of wine, as well as raisins, fresh grape juice and generally harvest the grape itself for consumption grapes.
In addition, the scientific study of the vineyard and all its production activities is known as ‘viticulture’.
A vineyard as the name implies is not a yard, rather it can be any field or estate where individuals grow grapes for the main purpose of producing wine at the end of the stipulated period.
A vineyard could be small, and just consist of few acres of land or may be as big as hundreds acres of land.
Sometimes wine producers could have one or two areas where they have their vineyards or dozens of vineyards in different regions, which are all used in the production of varieties of wine.
Creating wines at a vineyard
Technically a vineyard may not necessarily be a place wines are also produced, as the grapes could be cultivated for the purpose of making wines, but those in charge of growing and tenderizing the grape vines are not usually the same people responsible for the actual creation of wines.
Hence if wine maker’s tags “vineyard” to their wine bottle, they are probably the ones that grew the grapes and produced the wine in the bottle.
According to reports, the first evidence of the production of wine dates back from 5000 to 6000 BC.
The technology of wine making got improved during the era of the ancient Greeks; however, it was at the end of the Roman Dynasty that grape cultivation skills became general all over Europe.
Also in Europe churches were into wine, because it was very crucial for having Masses.
During the long instability that took place in the Middle Age where monasteries were said to have kept as well as developed the practice of viticulture.
They were able to do this as they had the available resources, stability, and security in improvement of the quality of the vines.
They were known to have cultivated and owned the best vineyards in the whole of Europe as well as considered the as the best out of the rest.
The European vineyards were cultivated with great varieties of ‘Vitis vinifera grape’, and towards the end of the 19th century, almost the whole species were ruined by the ‘plant-bug-phylloxera’, which entered Europe from the Northern part of America.
Natives of America had grapevines such as’ Vitis labrusca’ that was resistant to the fatal effects of the insect. ‘Vitis vinifera’ grapes were saved as a result of the grafting of the grapes to the rootstock of the varieties of the Native Americans.
Once the grapes are cultivated from the vineyards, they are taken to the winery, which is a place where the wines are produced.
Here the grapes are said to have their leaves removed, processed, stemmed and crushed.
The grape juice is now left to ferment as it gets older for a specific period of time, after which its being bottled and shipped for distribution.
In a nutshell, a winery is simply the place where all the stages of creating wines take place, once the grapes are matured and harvested.
Though a winery is different from a vineyard, it is sometimes common for vineyards and wineries to be at the same area and handled by the same individuals.
However, there are lots if cases where the winery and vineyard are separated. Some wine makers cannot afford to own and run a winery, so they send their grapes to bigger wineries to process.
The quality of wines
However, to determine the quality of a wine based on the winery or a vineyard it comes from, it’s not achievable, but there are good wineries that produce wine from the grapes harvested from the vineyards of others, while there are bad wineries that also do the same.
The goodness and quality of wines, depends totally on the opinion of those that drink the wine.
The quest for vineyard efficiency has recently provided an amazing array of systems and strategies.
Due to the productivity and advancement of the ‘New World’, there is now more attention on the proper management of vines to enhance growth. The more advanced methods like training the vine, thinning and pruning have immensely replaced general and traditional methods.
Most of the new techniques have replaced the old world practices.
Editor-in-Chief and Wine Writer
Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂
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