Wine Life

What Is The Difference Between Old World Wine and New World Wine

Maybe you have heard certain wine being referred to as new world wine and old world wine. Maybe you’ve heard that old world wine is better. Maybe you’ve heard that new world wine is cheaper. Maybe you haven’t!

Either way, let’s do a quick rundown of what it means if a wine is old world or new world.

 Old World Wine

  • Where vitis vinifera (common grape vine) originated
  • Countries included: France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Austria, Hungary, Germany & often Turkey, Georgia, Armenia, and Moldova are included
  • There are rules and regulations that strictly dictate the winemaking experiences and processes
  • The winemaking techniques are part of tradition – often passed down from generation to generation
  • Associated with a leaner, more acidic, heavier tannin taste with herb & earth undertones
  • Wine is named based on the region it is grown to emphasize the geographic soil and elevation
  • Common names are Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Chianti, Douro, Port, Rhone, and Sherry

New World Wine

  • Where vitis vinifera was imported
  • Countries include: United States, Australia, South Africa, Chile, Argentina, New Zealand, China, India, and Japan
  • The winemaking process is open to experimentation – this often includes the use of more technology
  • This will often include the mixing of grapes and production techniques
  • Wine is associated with a richer, fruit flavor – it is also known to be more oak influenced
  • Wine is named based on the grape used
  • Common names are Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Malbec, Merlot, Riesling, Syrah and Viognier

Simply put…

Old world wine = colonizer

New world wine = colonized

Old world wine = region based name

New world wine = grape based name.

There you have it!

Cheers, my unicorns!

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