10 Medieval Drinks That Became Modern

Discover 10 fascinating medieval drinks that have influenced modern beverages. Learn the history and evolution of ale, mead, cider, and more in this engaging guide.

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9. Wine: A Prestigious Drink

Wine was the healthiest choice of drink and only drunk by the prestigious depending on where you lived. The Mediterranean had their own vineyards, so everyone could and did enjoy it, but the northern part of Europe had to import the grapes and so it was only for the wealthy. The “wines” that northern medieval people were able to drink were mostly watered-down vinegar (which would happen after the grapes were pressed three or four times, and lost their taste).

Today we classify wines mostly as white, red, and blush. In the medieval ages, you would find gold wine, black wine, green wine, and pink wine – these colors changed as wines were aged. Wine-smelling the wine for quality was rather important, as shown by the medieval people of Padua who were recorded for their “wine-smelling tests”. Sweet wine was drank sparingly in order to avoid “over-heating” the body.

A wine you would have found among the nobility in medieval Europe: Medieval claret – a red Bordeaux wine. Close: Savigny-Les-Beaune of Beaune, Burgundy.

Cool fact: The oldest wine was found in Speyer, Germany and was nicknamed the “R√∂merwein” – supposedly drank in Ancient Rome.