Ways That European Wine Differs from American Wine

What Grapes Were Used?

In reality, this is one of the things that occurs to Americans when they start buying European wines. In American labeling, grapes that are in use are specifically identified by their name.

There are regulations, of course, there are rules, such as California, and a majority of states require 75% of the specific grape to be used to identify the grape for the bottles.

In the EU, the country of origin is usually listed on the label on the front, which requires consumers to be aware of which grapes are permitted in a particular area or requires the winery to add this information inside the bottle’s back.

  • Stylistic Conventions Do Continue

It’s a topic to discuss. However, for many generations, we’ve been informed that European wine was more balanced and had higher acidity or fruit than their American counterparts.

It’s an oversimplification, partially because both the EU and America have developed and because new growing regions have gained the spotlight.

Southern France, Spain, Portugal, and regions of Italy are just as capable of producing fruit-forward wines similar to California. In addition, the new parts of cultivation within Oregon, Washington, and even cooler climate areas in California are making balanced, palatable wines that will remind our grandparents more of France rather than the buttery, oaky blasts of Chardonnay that brought California vintners famous during the 1980s.

When you think about the variety of wines being produced when comparing Bordeaux to Burgundy, which is located 600km from each other, it’s easy to consider that it’s precisely the exact distance between San Francisco and Los Angeles, and that’s just around half the size of California.

An abundance of wines will also be made within the Golden State.

  • Co-op’s Do Exist, But Differently

To start, no, I’m discussing my son and his preschool in coops. And yes, Dad, we’ve become hippy-dippy.

Okay, in Europe, there are plenty of cooperative wineries. Like there are in California, however, the way they operate could not be more different.

Take LaMarca Prosecco. It’s not just a single grower or winemaker; it’s a group of both to pool their grapes, winemaking, and sales capabilities.

Then, they create something labeled with a common name; surprisingly, these are among the highest-rated wines around the world. In California, there are many cooperatives; however, they are an area where the newer or smaller wineries can lease space to produce their wines.

Additionally, we call them a custom crush. The significant difference between how a customized crush works and what you envision is that winemakers who work at a custom-made crush pay for a set amount of cases they can produce in the facility, not the actual space.

This is done to cut hundreds of thousands in initial costs to build a top-quality winery by hand.

  • History and Innovation Are At Odds

There’s no doubt that it is a fact that the European sector of wine is a bit older. There are few second-generation winemakers in California or even the 10th of the more extended lineages you will discover in France.

It’s usually a good thing, and that kind of tradition and expectation can result in an enlightened stewardship of the land and the community that is impossible without it.

However, a few aspects of this past have a cost. Do you wish to plant some lines of Grenache in Bordeaux? Do you think about growing a Verdelho located in the Rhone Valley?

Both are likely to make lots of sense from the perspective of winemaking, at the very least, when trying something new.

However, like other European winemaking regions, this type of experimentation is prohibited in France.

Wine Consumption is Changing

This is likely the most significant aspect of the list before it gets too long. Americans are enjoying more of their wine.

However, wine consumption in a variety of established European marketplaces is declining. Suppose you consider that Americans enjoy European wines, but Europeans purchase fewer bottles of American wines. In that case, it’s easy to see how things could become a little complicated in the wine industry within the next few years.

With the increasing demand in America, however, and a decrease in markets in the EU, is it possible that certain EU producers alter how they operate to become more American?

Are some American producers being pushed to the side of the road after an increase in imports from Europe? Does Wine that is cheap and tasty make more of their sales?

Here’s a list of five ways the EU and American marketplaces for wines differ, not just in the production method and how it is sold. While it’s not easy to make any conclusions about the millions of bottles that are produced along the process, this gives you, at the very least, some ideas to think about.


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