The cu­rrent ten­dency among con­nois­seurs has gi­ven a spe­cial im­por­tan­ce to an in­no­va­ti­ve va­riety of wi­nes known as “wi­nes of the New World.” Pro­du­ced mainly in the Ame­ri­cas, South Afri­ca, Aus­tra­lia and New Zea­land, they ma­ke up part of the­se va­rie­ties of emer­ging wi­nes.

Con­su­mers as well as eno­lo­gists ha­ve dif­fe­rent phi­lo­sop­hies. Lo­vers of New World wi­nes are ac­cus­to­med to being gui­de­d—up to a point—by mar­ke­ting that of­fers a wi­de va­riety of la­bels with mo­dern, sop­his­ti­ca­ted de­signs, or by the ty­pe of gra­pe.

On the ot­her hand, for Old World, or Eu­ro­pean, wi­nes it is the re­gion of ori­gin that is ta­ken in­to ac­count, sin­ce the­se wi­nes are re­cog­ni­zed by hints of the cha­rac­te­ris­tic aro­mas and fla­vors of the soil in which the gra­pes are grown.  The ma­nu­fac­tu­rers nor­mally apply the sa­me tech­no­logy, using old vi­nes and aging their wi­nes in the sa­me ty­pe of ba­rrels.  Their re­gu­la­tory bo­dies, furt­her­mo­re, are very strict re­gar­ding each pro­cess.



Cha­rac­te­ris­tics of New World Wi­nes

  • Cons­tant and on­going ex­pe­ri­ments with every as­pect of the gro­wing, ma­tu­ring and har­ves­ting of the gra­pe.
  • Crea­tion of new gra­pe pro­du­cing re­gions.
  • Mi­xing va­rie­ties of gra­pes in a search for qua­lity, wit­hout re­gard to tra­di­tion.
  • Using dif­fe­rent kinds of ba­rrels.
  • Pro­du­cing wi­nes with less tan­nic acid, wi­nes that ha­ve a shor­ter shelf li­fe.
  • Less ti­me for aging in ba­rrels.
  • Ex­pe­ri­men­ting with ma­king all kinds of wi­ne, wit­hout ta­king the va­riety of gra­pe in­to ac­count.
  • Star­ting to ma­nu­fac­tu­re or­ga­nic wi­nes.
  • Di­ver­si­fi­ca­tion of their wi­ne pro­duc­tion.


Evo­lu­tion of New World Wi­nes

New World wi­nes da­te back to 1493, with Ch­ris­top­her Co­lum­bus’ se­cond vo­ya­ge to the In­dies (Ame­ri­ca), when the Spa­nish mo­narchs or­de­red him to ta­ke vi­nes and oli­ve trees to the New World.

The­re, bet­ween 1521 and 1527, du­ring the era of the con­quest, the Spa­nish in­tro­du­ced gra­pe gro­wing in­to Me­xi­co. It was both a tra­di­tion and a ne­ces­sity for them to start plan­ting vi­ne­yards and ma­nu­fac­tu­ring wi­ne, and that was the ori­gin of wi­ne pro­duc­tion on this con­ti­nent.

By 1595, gra­pe gro­wing was flou­ris­hing in the New World and qua­lity wi­nes we­re being pro­du­ced. They be­ca­me strong com­pe­ti­tion for Spa­nish wi­nes and that is why Phi­llip II, King of Spain, ac­ting on be­half of the Spa­nish wi­ne­ma­kers, pro­hi­bi­ted plan­ting vi­nes on new lands and or­de­red the des­truc­tion of exis­ting vi­ne­yards.

On Au­gust 4, 1597, Don Lo­ren­zo Gar­cía took pos­ses­sion of “Las Mer­ce­des”, or the Pro­perty Ti­tles, aut­ho­ri­zed by Phi­llip II for lands and wa­ter sour­ces, on which they had pre­viously es­ta­blis­hed their land grants and be­gun plan­ting vi­ne­yards. This pro­ves that Bo­de­gas de San Lo­ren­zo, to­day Ca­sa Ma­de­ro, is the ol­dest vi­ne­yard in the Ame­ri­cas.

For al­most th­ree cen­tu­ries, South Afri­ca pro­du­ced me­dium-qua­lity wi­ne. It was not un­til in­ter­na­tio­nal sanc­tions against Apart­heid we­re lif­ted that the country really in­jec­ted li­fe in­to this in­dustry. This can be seen in the re­plan­ting pro­grams that we­re ca­rried out, as well as in the crea­tion of new vi­ne­yards in cold re­gions. And most im­por­tant of all is that their qua­lity wi­nes are now re­cog­ni­zed in­ter­na­tio­nally.



Over the years, wi­ne­ma­king in the Uni­ted Sta­tes has pro­li­fe­ra­ted to the de­gree that 48 of the country’s 50 sta­tes now pro­du­ce wi­ne. The most im­por­tant of all is the sta­te of Ca­li­for­nia, not only be­cau­se of the qua­lity of its land, cli­ma­te and wi­ne, but be­cau­se it is res­pon­si­ble for 95% of the country’s to­tal wi­ne pro­duc­tion.

Thanks to the mis­sio­na­ries, who had been char­ged by the Spa­nish crown to con­vert the In­dians, and who ca­rried with them, in their knap­sacks, vi­ne shoots to cul­ti­va­te, gra­pe gro­wing ex­ten­ded th­roug­hout the Ame­ri­can Con­ti­nent. In 1791, the San­to To­más de Aqui­no Mis­sion was foun­ded in what to­day is the San­to To­más Va­lley in Ba­ja Ca­li­for­nia.

In 1788, when the first Bri­tish co­lo­nists brought shoots over on their boats, gra­pes be­gin to be cul­ti­va­ted in Aus­tra­lia. The de­ca­de of the six­ties is when the mo­dern era of Aus­tra­lian wi­nes be­gan.

The Aus­tra­lian wi­ne in­dustry was well es­ta­blis­hed by 1850.  Vic­to­ria was the first, fo­llo­wed, years la­ter, by South Aus­tra­lia, and their wi­nes won ma­jor in­ter­na­tio­nal com­pe­ti­tions.

To­day, Aus­tra­lia, which has bro­ken with the tra­di­tions of the Eu­ro­pean coun­tries, is one of the world’s ma­jor in­no­va­tors in wi­ne­ma­king.


Or­ga­no­lep­tic Qua­li­ties

With re­gard to their or­ga­no­lep­tic qua­li­ties, the vi­nes of the New World are very fruity and frank. They ex­press pri­mary aro­mas, ty­pi­cal of the gra­pe, that allow for a wi­de va­riety of com­bi­na­tions for all tas­tes.


Pri­me Exam­ples:

Brand /Re­gion or Zo­ne


  • Me­xi­co

Char­don­nay Ca­sa Gran­de / Pa­rras, Coa­hui­la

Úni­co San­to To­más / Va­lle Sto. To­más, BC

Vi­no de Pie­dra / Va­lle de Gua­da­lu­pe, BC

Mo­gor Ba­dan / Va­lle de Gua­da­lu­pe, BC




  • Uni­ted Sta­tes

Opus One, Oak­vi­lle, Na­pa

In­sig­nia St. He­le­na, Na­pa

Ca­ke­bread Oak­vi­lle, Na­pa


  • South Afri­ca

Ste­llenryck / Ste­llen­bosch

Backs­berg / Paarl

Ste­llen Zicht / Ste­llen­bosch


  • Aus­tra­lia

Fi­res­tick (Shi­raz-Ca­ber­net Sau­vig­non),

Lang­hor­ne Creek, Vic­to­ria

Pe­ta­lu­ma / Ba­rro­sa Va­lley

Ro­se­mount Es­ta­te / Hun­ter Va­lley,

New South Wa­les

Lin­de­mans / Hun­ter Va­lley



  • New Zea­land

Ku­meu  Ri­ver Char­don­nay / Auc­kland

Kem­ble­field / Haw­ke’s Bay

Mon­ta­na / Auc­kland


  • Chi­le

Al­ma­vi­va / Mai­po

Don Ma­xi­mia­no / Acon­ca­gua

Don Mel­chor / Ra­pel

Le Dix / San­ta Ri­ta


  • Ar­gen­ti­na

Ca­te­na Za­pa­ta / Men­do­za

Te­rra­zas / Men­do­za

Na­va­rro Co­rrea / Men­do­za

Lui­gi Bos­ca / Men­do­za    



Text: Georgina Estrada Gil, sommelier del restaurante Le Cirque, Ciudad de México ± Photo: Grupo La Castellana, Adrián García, Commercial Goal Achievers