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For wine-growing regions, see under Origin.

One of the most important criteria for a certain quality and distinctiveness of a wine is the controlled geographical origin of the grapes from which it was pressed. The "controlled" means that the corresponding wine law specifications are also strictly checked on a regular basis. The most important reason is to protect against wine adulteration. Even in ancient times, there were isolated instances of the custom of naming wines according to their origin. Among the oldest European designations of origin are the area defined in 1716 for Chianti, and the boundaries defined in 1756 for Port. The great pioneer for a nationwide system, however, was France, where an appellation system (Appellation d'Origine Protégée) was adopted after the end of the First World War. This established a locally defined and controlled origin and production methods for agricultural products. Under the sovereignty of the INAO (Institut National des Appellations d'Origine), the rules for viticulture were perfected after the Second World War.

Herkunft als wichtige Einflussgröße für Terroir

Terroir & wine typicity

Closely related to the appellation system in France is the comprehensive concept of terroir, which has been internalised by producers. This encompasses the complex influence or interplay of climate (microclimate), soil type, grape varieties and, last but not least, the art of the winemaker on the unmistakable typicity of a specific, precisely defined area. The French system served as a great model for the wine law regulations of most wine-growing countries in Europe and to some extent also in the New World. However, the laws in the countries do not only regulate the origin, but also include country-specific regulations for permissible quality wine grape varieties, pruning and maximum yields, as well as for production and characteristics of the wine such as minimum and/or maximum amounts for...

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Egon Mark

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Egon Mark
Diplom-Sommelier, Weinakademiker und Weinberater, Volders (Österreich)

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