Italian Historians Revive Roman Empire Winemaking Techniques
on 28/08/13 at 3:04 pmWine
Historians in Italy are trying to replicate the type of wine drunk during the Roman empire, after referring to 2,000-year-old texts.
The team, based at the University of Catania in Sicily, has planted a vineyard near Catania, using tools and techniques that were used by the Romans.
The Daily Telegraph reported that the historians are using strips of cane and twists of wood from broom brushes to bind the vines to the poles. Also there will be no mechanisation, pesticides or fertilisers used on the plantation.
The texts used as reference were the poet Virgil’s manual on farming, Georgics, and the tips from a genuine first century AD winemaker, Columella, whose techniques were apparently used well into the 17th century.
Columella apparently referenced 50 varieties although their modern equivalents are not all known. Therefore, the team are planting eight local grape varieties, including Nerello Mascalese, Visparola, Racinedda and Muscatedda and will be using terracotta pots to store the wine.