April 1100: Schloss Johannisberg, Germany, was established during this time. In 1720, when the whole estate was planted with a Riesling type of grapes, Schloss Johannisberg made history by becoming the world’s first closed Riesling vineyard. In addition, the estate claims they were the first to manufacture Spatlese in 1775, and Eiswein in 1858.
April 1845: In this month, botanist Edward Tucker initially identified powdery mildew, or Erysiphe necator, in England after seeing that a plant disease from the United States had spread to the U.K. Tucker discovered that the plant disease shared a molecular structure with the peach mildew that he had successfully treated with sulfur in earlier years. The casual farmer could see how the vines altered with each season of the phenological cycle and how susceptible different plant portions were to powdery mildew infection. Cleistothecia branches developed at temperatures between 18 and 30 °C (64 and 86 °F), and ascospores appeared in the springtime with rain, sprinkler irrigation, or fog. Conidial production, or asexual propagules that resemble white powder and are distributed by the wind, started 7–10 days after the initial infection and lasted all season long with mild temperatures maintained. To put it another way, the cleistothecia infected buds in the middle of the previous growing season and quickly created disease hotspots in the following one. In areas with milder winters, this occurrence was more frequent, whereas, in areas with harsher freezes, the fungus in the buds was killed.
April 1854: During this month, Reims was connected to the rest of France, especially its coastal ports, by the French national railroad network. As a result of being connected to the global market, Champagne’s sales began to soar. Production peaked in the 1850s at 20 million bottles annually on average.
April 1863: The phylloxera epidemic occurred in France after migrating from North America on leaf cuttings in the 1850s. The issue quickly becomes widespread across the continent. The phylloxera pest, a microscopic yellow louse carried to Europe via American native vines by botanists working in the Victorian era, was responsible for destroying Europe’s vineyards.
April 1900: During this month, the fermentation of grain and grape beverages in making wine was discovered in India. The winemaking and grape growing discovery in India became common practice across India.
April 1967: During this month, the Vinitaly Wine and Spirits Trade Show was established in Verona, Italy. At this yearly event in the picturesque Italian town of Verona, wine, food, art, and community join together. Vinitaly, a large-scale Italian wine trade show held in April each year, is regarded as one of the most important wine occasions in Europe, if not the entire globe. The event, which has been going on since 1967, includes a number of master classes, competitions, and exhibitions that draw serious sommeliers, buyers, and professionals from the industry, but it also offers a variety of well-attended consumer events, tastings, and cultural experiences for the more laid-back vino-loving attendees.
April 1977: The Court Of Master Sommeliers was formally created this month. The inaugural Master Sommelier examination was held in 1969, and after years of dilligance, it has become the world’s leading evaluating organization for sommeliers. If you previously work in the dining or wine industry and want to hone your service and sales abilities as a wine sommelier, the Court of Master Sommeliers program is the right choice for you. Introductory, Certified, Advanced, and Master are the three certification levels offered by CMS. Reading a few basic textbooks like “Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopedia” and “Windows on the World of Wine” will help you prepare for the multiple-choice questions on the “Court of Master Sommeliers” introduction test. You should have a fundamental understanding of the major grape varieties available on the market, as well as a familiarity with the wines’ look, aroma, and flavor. However, there is a growing emphasis on wine service and accurate wine analysis as you advance through the levels of CMS. Multiple-choice and short-answer questions are part of the Certified exam in the CMS, which also includes a blind tasting of two wines and correct Champagne serving. The two Advanced tests include three parts: a multi-section theoretical test, a service test that covers serving Champagne properly, decanting red wine, and matching food and wine. Additionally assessed is a blind tasting of six wines. Being a specialist in beverages, including spirits, tea, coffee, sake, and beer, is a requirement for becoming a Master Sommelier.
April 1993: The American Wine Society established American Wine Appreciation Week to recognize women winemakers and the valuable contributions they have made to the wine industry. The inaugural event was celebrated during April 22–28. In 2001, American Wine Society members voted to change this week of celebration into International Women’s Wine Day, observed annually on March 8.
April 1993: The process of DNA profiling for wine was innovated. Winemakers have previously either used commercial yeast to ferment grapes or hoped that native yeast would suffice. However, what happened next was unknown. Today, analysis of DNA allows winemakers to examine yeast strains in real time during the fermentation process, allowing them to better understand when fermentation is going well or poorly. Winemakers can use testing for spoilage yeast and bacteria to make better judgments during ageing and bottling.
April 1994: In this month, the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles was introduced. Since its start in 1994, the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles has been an annual international wine competition. The competition’s name is sometimes abbreviated to Concours Mondial, especially since it is hosted in nations other than Belgium.
April 2009: During this month in Egypt, jars with wine residue recovered in Scorpion I’s tomb show early wine commerce. Around this period, Egypt started cultivating grapes for wine manufacture domestically, and the business eventually grew to be huge and standardized. Possibly the earliest of its kind, Egyptian wine labels are highly detailed. Tutankhamun’s tomb contained 26 jars of wine, each of which had a specific date on it.
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