Old World and New World Wines – How to Tell the Difference

August 13, 2018

If you are new to wine then you probably can’t tell Old World wine from New World wine.

Each time you try a different wine, you learn more about your preferences, which is why it helps to figure out whether you like wine from the Old World or prefer wine from the New World.



Here’s everything you need to know about Old World and New World wines:


Old World Wine

What comes to mind when you hear the word “wine”? Most people will imagine the lush vineyards of France and Italy and that is because these countries were some of the original winemakers.

France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Germany and several other countries in Europe were making exquisite wine long before the rest of world jumped on the bandwagon.

These countries are Old World wine regions.



Characteristics of Old World wine

While rookies may not be able to tell the difference between Old World and New World wine, there definitely is a difference in taste.

Old world wines tend to be lighter-bodied, they usually contain lower levels of alcohol compared to New World wines and they are more restrained. Generally, Old World wines consist of earthy flavors of herbs, minerals and flora.

Although not all Old World wines fit this description, the majority of them do.



Making of Old World Wine

There is a clear difference in how Old World wine and New World wine is made. The process of making Old World wine has seen little change through the decades. These countries/regions prefer to hold on to ancient traditions of wine-making in order to maintain their heritage and culture. 


New World Wine

New World wine refers to the countries and regions of the world where the art of winemaking along with wine grapes, were imported after the demand of wine grew globally.

These countries consist of the USA, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, India, Japan and many more.