October 26, 1943: On this day Sir Marc Aurel Stein, a Hungarian-born British archaeologist, died in Kabul, Afghanistan. Back in 1936, Stein had become the first individual to undertake excavations at Hajji Firuz Tepe, the site of a Neolithic village in the northern Zagros Mountains of Iran. Subsequent excavations led by Charles Burney, a British archaeologist known for his excavations across the Near East, at the site of Hajji Firuz Tepe from 1958 onwards into the 1960s revealed that the village, which was settled between 7,000 and 7,500 years ago, was one of the first centers in the world where wine was extensively produced and consumed on Earth. Here Neolithic people around 5500 BC were beginning to construct 55-liter jars in which they stored huge amounts of wine, making Hajji Firuz Tepe one of the most substantial sites in the early history of viticulture worldwide. For more, see Mark Berkowitz’s ‘World’s Earliest Wine’, in Archaeology, Vol. 49, No. 5 (1996); R. Phillips, A Short History of Wine (New York, 2000), pp. 2–3.

October 26, 2017: On this day, The Wine Guys: Grape Escapes was released in Canada. The documentary shows wine importers Michael, Chuck, and Charlie on their mission to find the best as they tour romantic vineyards across the world.

October 26, 2021: On this day, the first International Mavrud Day was organized. The goal was to increase the wine variety’s visibility both domestically and internationally. Wine specialists, sommeliers, and representatives of the tourism industry collaborated on the project. At the 7th annual conference of Travel Academy, Krasimira Kodukova, a representative of the Bulgarian Association of Wine Professionals, announced that the initiative was their idea. It was intended for 2021 to be the first anniversary of the Bulgarian wine variety. The International Mavrud Day was planned to run for at least a week, and Plovdiv was chosen as the hub of activities because the variety is mostly found there. One suggestion was for the occasion to develop into a month-long holiday across the nation. Promotions for various Bulgarian Mavrud brands, wine tastings, talks on the characteristics and quality of wine for professionals and amateurs, and weekend wine tourism packages were all scheduled at this time.

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