Wine has a long and storied history since archeology has shown that grapes have been fermented into wine for thousands of years. A recent discovery south of Jerusalem of a stone wine press is making archeologists think that wine may have been massed produced more than 1400 years ago. When pared with an identical wine press recently discovered in Ashkelon it is appearing that at one time this region was a major producer of wine which was probably exported to Egypt and Europe.
This 21 by 54 foot wine press is situated in an area that was during this time part of the Byzantine Empire. This agricultural region must have raised many grapes to have filled these giant presses in order to begin the winemaking process.
For those who are very into wine and the whole colorful history of this fermented drink from its origins in the Middle East and beyond this discovery is exciting. It shows that wine was made in large quantities for more than just a fine wine art for the rich but something that was made for export to other regions for sale and trade.