Researchers may have the answer to what kind of wine Jesus might have drank back in the day.
Biblical historians and researchers have pondered over several things within the Bible ad the Last Supper is definitely one of them. However, it doesn’t take a lot of pondering to know that wine was definitely part of the menu. After all, it’s literally written in the Bible.
However, what does arouse everybody’s curiosity is what kind of wine might Jesus and the 12 disciples have had. Winemaking was a significant part of the culture where Jesus grew up. In fact, in 2016, Israeli archaeologists even dug up a wine ledger that contained mentions of Jerusalem outside of the Bible.
Now, researchers are claiming that they might have the answer.
Dr. Patrick McGovern, an anthropology professor from the University of Pennsylvania and also, the Director for of the Biomolecular Archaeology Project for Cuisine, Fermented Beverages and Health, mentions that winemaking existed in the Middle East way beyond 5,000 years ago.
He suggests that the practice was prevalent in the Holy Land even before the biblical era and that wine was even exported from here during the Roman rule.
Eliyashiv Drori, an Israeli oenologist, even points out that the scriptures are filled with references to wine and grapes and this was much before the French even came up with the idea on their own.
Archaeologists and winemakers are now eager to determine what wine might have been like during this period. Drori himself is heading a team at Ariel University that is relying on DNA testing to recreate these ancient wines. The team’s research has so far revealed that Armenian white wine made from Dabouki grapes might be one of the oldest varieties to be traced back to Israel’s west bank region. Drori even suggests that this could have been the wine had by Jesus.
Similarly, authors Randall Heskett and Joel Butler, in their book Divine Vintage, speak of wines during Jesus’s period being infused with pepper, curry, dried fruits, and honey. Their book also talks about how winemakers often added terebinth, frankincense, and myrrh to preserve the wine.
The authors even discuss the origins of wine as a whole and its role in the Bible.
In 2013, an excavation near Nahariya, Israel led to the discovery of a wine cellar, said to be almost 4,000 years old. The evidence obtained from the cellar indicated that ancient wine was infused with mint, cedar, cinnamon, bark, honey and tree resins.
McGovern, who has based his own research on such discoveries, believes that the closest relative to the Last Supper wine could be Amarone. Amarone is a rich red wine that is currently made in Northern Italy. However, there has been no conclusive evidence yet.