More Wine Facts

More Wine Facts

Wine facts are always fun and interesting. You can learn something new or something wild you never thought possible. So let’s go on another journey to discover some interesting things about wine, how it’s made, and why we love it.

Did you know the first wine in space was in 1969 with Buzz Aldrin? One small step for man, one giant leap for wine! In the 1970’s a way to package Sherry was discovered allowing it to be sent along with those participating in the Apollo program. Charles Bourland found a way to package the wine so it didn’t lose its flavor. Specialized plastic with a straw inserted allowed a simple squeeze and astronauts could enjoy wine in space! The public learned of this, however, and the plug was pulled, canceling the initiative. I think we can all agree how unfortunate this was for all those who put work into the process and for the astronauts who had to miss out while they were gone.

Wasps are actually critical in the development of the grapes used to make wine. Wasps love grapes and grapes happen to grow a fungus called Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This is crucial in making beer, bread, and wine. Winemakers will add more yeast later but in the absence of this natural fungus, the wine isn’t as flavorful. The fungus dies off during the winter but the wasps swoop in to help out. They ingest the fungus and take it to their nests to share with their larvae. The fungus survives in the stomaches of the adults and the larvae so that when they are grown and go for their first taste of real grapes, the fungus gets passed back into the grapes. This creates a new vintage with each year. So while we may have never thought of wasps as our friends, if you love wine, you may just have a newfound respect for the mean stingers.

Come back for more interesting facts about wine and its history! It’s always fun to learn something new. Did you know about the wasps or wine in space?

 

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