Definition - What does Europe mean?

Europe is a continent that comprises well-known countries like Spain to the Southeast, Italy in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea and Germany to the North; the continent stretches all the way to Asia, with Russia being partly located in Europe and partly located in Asia near Siberia, a region called Eurasia.

While wine is as old as human civilization, Europe is regarded as the birthplace of traditional Old World wines, with France, Italy, Spain and Portugal being some of the major wine producers on continent. Of these four, the most popular wine styles are Champagne, Pinot Grigio, Tempranillo and Port respectively.

WineFrog explains Europe

The variation in winemaking regions is one of the characteristics that makes European wines unique. The vast variety in wine growing practices has been the foundation of the varied wine styles we enjoy today. White wines from one region are not often similar to that of another, for example, a German Riesling is vastly different from an Italian Pinot Grigio.

The climates can vary from warm and temperate along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea to cool and dry along the northern Atlantic coastline, creating a diverse growing spectrum. In France, there are so many grape varieties that each region is known for a specific type of wine, for example, Bordeaux is known for red wines, the Rhône region produces Roussanne and Marsanne, and Champagne is globally known for its sparkling wine by the same name.

The minor winemaking regions in Europe make up 20 of the smaller countries that produce wine and grow many grape varieties. Some of these include:

  • England
  • Greece
  • Belgium
  • Hungary
  • Russia
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • Cyprus
  • Croatia
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