February 1, 1141: On this day, the foundation of Barone Ricasoli, Italy, was laid. The Tuscan winery is the oldest one still in business in Italy. The history of the Brolio Castle, which is now home to the winery, is intricately entwined with the history of wine making writ large. At the end of the 17th century, their wines began their international debut, as they were sent to England and Amsterdam.
February 1, 1801: On this day, John June Lewis, Sr was born. He is known as the first African-American winemaker in the United States. While stationed in France during World War I, John June Lewis, Sr. fell in love with wine and agriculture. He inherited acreage in Clarksville, Virginia, shortly after prohibition ended, and by 1933, he had planted his first grapes on the property.
Feb 1, 2004: On this day, Ditton Wine Traders (now Ditton Wine & Spirits) was established. It is a corporation focused on the mercantile side of wine.
Feb 1, 2012: On this day, Nova Scotia Wine Tours was established to offer a wide range of day tours to suit everyone’s needs.
February 1, 2014: On this day, A Year in Champagne was released. Director David Kennard, who previously directed A Year in Burgundy, is now uncorking Champagne. Renowned wine merchant Martine Saunier takes viewers through the entire winemaking process, from small independent producers to industry-defining champagne houses such as Bollinger, and unveils the vintners who make the magic in the bottle (with lessons on the science behind it).
February 1, 2022: Furmint Day. Dániel Kézdy created this holiday to give this Hungarian staple grape, the basis for Tokaj, more international attention. It is part of the larger festivities for Furmint February, which began in 2013 in Hungary and consists of a month-long series of activities aimed at highlighting this type. As new plantings and vintages of ever-higher quality become available using Furmint grapes, the celebration will allow more and more wine lovers in on Hungary’s iconic varietal.
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