Wine Law

Definition of Wine Carlos Torres1 1. Introduction; 1.1. Origins; 1.2. Classification; 2. The Legal Definition of Wine; 2.1. Background; 2.2. Griffe Law; 2.3. European Community; 2.4. International Organisation of the Vine and Wine (OIV); 3. Alcohol- -Free Wine; Bibliography. 1. INTRODUCTION 1.1. Origins Wine is a natural product, rather than an artificial one, made from grapes. Respectively, a grape is a fruit that comes from the vine, one of the oldest plants on Earth, which probably appeared at the end of the Cretaceous era, around 65 million years ago. It is thought that viticulture developed about 8,000 years ago – pottery fragments have revealed the earliest evidence of grape winemaking –, with the very first civilizations of the Middle East, particularly in Transcaucasia. Etymologically, the term “wine” derives from the Sanskrit vena, formed by the root ven- (to love, from which Venus comes). Moreover, according to Cicero, it comes from the combination of two Latin words, vir (man, hero) and vis (force, violence, strength, power, energy). Following all the currently in use languages of Latin and Germanic origins, the word “wine” even seems to come from the Latin vinum, which, in turn, comes from the Ancient Greek oinos, “wine” in English, “wein” in German, “vino” in Spanish, Italian and Russian (phonetically similar despite its modern Russian Cyrillic spelling, “Вино”) and “vinho” in Portuguese. 1 Estoril Higher Institute for Tourism and Hotel Studies.