Brent Lello Yass Valley Wine Columnist

In the serious and continuous pursuit of the perfect bottle, sometimes I catch myself being a little bit too serious about wine, not often but sometimes. But like a lot of things in life, there is a lighter side to the world of wine.

As we wrap up the year, here are some perky and peculiar wine “facts”. There are around 160 wine grape varieties grown across Australia.

There are around 10,000 grape varieties grown right across the globe. Shiraz is the most widely planted grape variety in Australia with 40,000 hectares under vine. Next is Cabernet Sauvignon with 25,000 hectares and Chardonnay with 21,000.

Riesling is well down the list with 3,000 hectares. In Australia, a wine labelled as a varietal might have up to 15% of another grape variety.

For example, a wine labelled as Shiraz could have some Cabernet in it. Not likely, but legit.

There are 65 wine regions in all of Australia across every state and territory except the Northern Territory. This number specifies Tassie as just one region, which I do debate. Australians consume around 30 litres on average each year.

Compare this to 74 litres consumed per capita in the Vatican City. Merry old souls indeed.

The oldest vineyard in Australia is the Langmeil Freedom vineyard in the Barossa Valley, planted in 1843.

The oldest vineyard in the Yass Valley region is with Clonakilla, first planted in 1971.

The fear or hate of wine is known as “oenopohobia.” What is wrong with some people?!

The average age of a French oak tree that is harvested for wine barrels is around 170 years.

One bottle of wine is produced from around 1.3 kilos of grapes or around 600 grapes.

One grapevine can produce around 10 bottles. One acre can contain about 400 vines, yielding around 5 tonnes of grapes.

You should pronounce the “t” in Moët & Chandon Champagne. While Moët was indeed French, his name was, in fact, Dutch, hence the “t.”

In Italy, there is a free 24-hour wine fountain installed just outside of Rome. Might have to propose a similar project to the Yass Council.

A bottle of sparkling wine contains up to 90 PSI of pressure, that’s twice as much as the air pressure in your car tyre.

Red wines always lose colour with age and get lighter. White wines always gain colour and get darker. And finally, there is more alcohol in mouthwash than in wine—a business opportunity there for sure.

Hopefully, there is something in all of this for everybody.

Cheers!