History of wine storage and transportation

interesting article from a source I didn’t know:

Not to nit-pick, but “The Celts are recognized as the inventors of the wooden barrel, but it was through the Gauls that the Romans adopted them

The Celts were the Gauls. That’s why they spoke Gaelic. Celt is pronounced with a hard C, which back then was more likely close to a G, and the people were known as Gaels.

The advent of better glass was one thing that helped but until guys like Mansell came along with his molds and coal and standardized glass, the containers were generally hand-made and were even illegal in some places because the volume could be deceptively reduced by a few indentations, shape, etc. But when he was able to come up with a way to standardize production, they could create a standardized closure finally, rather than carve to spec. The material science of the day was limited and the tolerances of the bottlenecks were not down to micro millimeters, so they needed something that could be compressed but would spring back and the best they had at the time was cork. Unfortunately, now that far better materials exist, we seem to have decided that progress should stop.

Anyway, nice article all in all.

I have a pretty interesting book called Wood, Whiskey, and Wine, by Henry H. Work.

It’s a great overview of the history of the barrel, its forms, and applications.

The author does a good job of explaining some of the rudimentary science behind the interaction between alcoholic beverages and oak, too.

Here’s a link to a review of the book: