Guest Column

12 Oldest Wine Companies In The World


Which are the oldest wine companies? A question that crosses the minds of many wine enthusiasts.

The official birth of viticulture goes back to four thousand millennia before the birth of Christ. Since the early years of history, the wine was considered an elixir of the gods and a beverage reserved for the privileged few.

Nowadays, wine is no longer an exclusivist drink, therefore enjoy a glass of sparkling Prosecco while finding out which are the 12 oldest wine companies in the world.

Sign Up for E-News

1. Staffelter Hof – Germany

The Staffelter Hof is one of the oldest wine companies in Germany. Its name is linked to a monastery in Belgium and its winemaking history goes back to the 862 AD.

The winery produced wines exclusively for the monastery until the secularization during the French revolution and subsequently, the company was bought by Peter Schneiders, a vineyard manager responsible for the success and longevity of the company.

Today, the company is focused on the production of Riesling wines, although they also have an exquisite red, made from the Spätburgunder grape variety and aged in oak barrels.

2. Château de Goulaine – France

The Loire Valley is a region famous for its spectacular landscapes, medieval castles, and exquisite wines. And one of the oldest wine companies in France and in the world is located here. The Château de Goulaine’s history goes back to the year 1000 when Marquis Goulaine founded the first winery in France.

The winery still belongs to the same family and produces some excellent Muscat and Vouvray wines. For this reason, the company is considered the oldest European family owned winery.

It is also believed that the company produced the first commercial Chardonnay in the western Loire Valley.

3. Schloss Johanisberg – Germany

Although Germany is not one of the leader winemaking countries, it boasts some of the oldest wine companies. In fact, Schloss Johannisberg winery is the third on our list and its history begins in the year 1100.

Initially, the winery was a religious site that has been converted over time into a wine-growing company. The winery claims to have discovered the late harvest winemaking technique and although their claim is debatable, Schloss Johannisberg still made the first Spätlese Riesling in the world.

Other exquisite wines produced for the first time by the company are Auslese and Eiswein, two varieties particularly appreciated in Germany.

4. Barone Ricasoli – Italy

In 1141 Baron Ricasoli establishes the oldest wine company in Italy that still bears his name. The winery is located between Siena and Florence, an area particularly famous all over the world for the great quality of the wines.

Barone Ricasoli winery is a pioneer in the production of Chianti wine and also one of the major wine exporters of the Middle Ages. In fact, since the late 1600s, the company started to export its wines to the Netherlands and England. Until the beginning of the 20th century, the Ricasoli wines were exported to almost all over the world, including China and Saudi Arabia, Guatemala, South Africa, and Costa Rica.

One of the greatest achievements of the company is the choice of the Sangiovese grape variety as the main vine for the production of the classical Chianti wine.

5. Antinori – Italy

39 years later, in 1180, in Italy emerges the second oldest wine company of the country, the fifth in the world. Antinori family started producing wine in the Florentine countryside to then move to Florence in 1202.

In 1385 the winery joined the Guild of the Winemakers, and this is also the official date from which the company has started to be seen as a business.

Initially, the winery focused on the production of Chianti Classic variety and it reinvented itself in 1971 with the launch of the first Tignanello wine obtained from a blend of Tignanello, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc grape varieties.

This wine literally shook up the Italian wine industry leading to changes in winemaking rules and attitudes. Another exquisite wine the company produces is Cabernet Solaia, a perfect blend of Tignanello and Bordeaux grapes.

6. Schloss Vollrads – Germany

Back to Germany, we have to mention a wine company founded in 1211 that became famous mainly for its Rieslings, the Schloss Vollrads winery.

The company started trading wine for the first time to the Saint Viktor monastery in Mainz, and the cultivation of Riesling developed steadily ever since.

Today, the winery brags about its ancient origins and opens its gates to visitors. Besides wine tasting and wine and food pairing courses, it is also possible to attend the harvest period and even follow the growth of the grapes in real time from anywhere in the world.

oldest wine companies

7. Frescobaldi – Italy

Without a doubt, both Italy and Germany have a word to say when it comes to the oldest wine companies in the world. In fact, the seventh oldest winery is considered to be the Frescobaldi, in Tuscany.

The winery roots are set in 1308 and the history of the company is closely linked to the evolution of art in the region. According to the Frescobaldi family, the company was the wine supplier of the Italian Renaissance painter Michelangelo.

Frescobaldi also started to export wines and was one of the preferred wine suppliers of King Henry VIII.

The company is also a pioneer of the modern wine production in Tuscany and responsible for the introduction of the Merlot, Chardonnay and Cabernet vines to the region.

8. Karthäuserhof – Germany

Founded in 1335, this centuries-old winery is considered to be the eighth oldest wine company in the world.

The peculiarity of this winery throughout the centuries was the growth and production of only one variety of wine, although today it grows Riesling and a small quantity of Pinot Blanc.

For the growth of the grapes, the winery uses exclusively organic fertilizer and encourages natural predators in an attempt to maintain the use of pesticides to a minimum. All harvesting is done by hand and their wines are still produced according to the ancient techniques.

9. Can Bonastre – Spain

After over 200 years, in 1548, Spain meets its first winery, the Can Bonastre. The company’s vineyards stretch on over 100 hectares of land and count over 50 grape varieties, including Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and also Tempranillo, a native variety.

The winery prioritizes the quality of its wines, paying a meticulous attention to all the aspects of the winemaking process.

Today, the Can Bonastre produces 13 different varieties of wines, most of them unique due to the creativity used to blend several varieties.

10. Codornìu – Spain

The second oldest wine company in Spain is Codorníu winery. Founded in 1551 and located in the region of Catalonia, the company is a pioneer in regard to the production of cava wines bottled in hollow bottles.

In fact, the first hollow bottles date back to 1872 when the family bottles the first sparkling wine in a bottle different from the others.

Today, the Codorníu’s sparkling wines are still produced and bottled according to the traditional method.

11. Casa Madero – Mexico

urprisingly enough, one of the oldest wine companies in the world is not located in Europe, but in Mexico. The foundation of the company is a contribution of Spain, who brought the winemaking techniques from Europe to Central America.

Located in Parras de la Fuente, the company was established in 1568 and started to produce wine for the masses 29 years later.

The winery is famous mostly for its delicious Chardonnays and it is safe to say that it is the first winery in all Americas.

12. Dopff-Au-Moulin – France

Lastly, we go back to the heart of Europe, more precisely in Alsace where the Dopff family established the Dopff-Au-Moulin winery in 1574. Since then, the family dedicated itself to the production of some of the finest wines in the region.

Dopff-Au-Moulin is considered the inventor of the exquisite Crémant d'Alsace, a wine that is a consequence of the grapes grown in a favorable climate and good soil and that is made through a special technique that implies a second fermentation in the bottle. The grapes of choice are Pinot Blanc, although the winery is famous for the production of many other wines as well.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. Click here to submit a Guest Column.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News



AtlantiCast: Episode 15

On this week’s AtlantiCast, learn some important tips for controlling and avoiding diabetes from an Atlantic Health System expert, see how Atlantic Health is advancing cutting-edge research, hear what’s being done to keep health care environmentally friendly and much more!


Memorial Day Parades, Events in the Morristown Area

May 24, 2018

MORRISTOWN, NJ -  Grab your red, white and blue and celebrate the brave men and women have sacrificed their lives to preserve our freedom. There are several commemorations, parades and events planned in Morristown to honor them this Memorial Day.

On Saturday May 26, a memorial service and parade will take place in Morris Plains. The memorial service will take place at 9am at ...

Morristown Loyola Retreat Hosts Retreat; Monday June 11

MORRISTOWN, NJ - Sacred Thread Ministries is inviting members to a one day retreat on Monday June 11 at the Loyola Retreat Center in Morristown.

Members of the community are invited to discover the gardens of your soul and the mindfulness that enables us to focus on the energy of the present moment for a day of retreat.

The retreat will take place at the Loyola Retreat Center, 161 ...

Reserve Your Spot: Morris County Historical Tours Begin This Summer

MORRISTOWN, NJ - Community members are invited to “Discover Morris County” through the summer walking tour and lecture series  The Morris County Tourism Bureau invites everyone to experience the rich history that Morris County has to offer with a knowledgeable guide. Summer programs will be held over nine successive Saturday mornings during June, July and August.  ...

Original Music Fest Comes to Ginty Field This Memorial Day Weekend

May 25, 2018

MORRISTOWN, NJ -Are you staying in town this Memorial Day weekend? If so, check out the Original Music Fest at Ginty Field on Monday May 28.

The event is FREE and will take place immediately following the Memorial Day parade and observance. Organizers of the event anticipate times of the festival to be around 12noon - 3:30pm

The Recreation Department of Morris Township is teaming up ...

Jacobus Vanderveer House Designated A Blue Star Museum; Allows Military Members Free Access to the Museum

Bedminster’s historic Jacbous Vanderveer House & Museum has been designated a Blue Star Museum, one of more than 2,000 museums across America to offer free admission to the nation’s active duty military personnel and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day.  The Jacobus Vanderveer House & Museum is one of 24 Blue Star Museums in New Jersey, and one of only two ...

Butterfly Bonanza Flies to Pyramid Mountain; June 9

MORRISTOWN, NJ. On Saturday, June 9, from 12 noon to 4 p.m., celebrate the beauty and importance of New Jersey’s butterflies and other pollinators at the annual Butterfly Bonanza at Pyramid Mountain Natural Historic Area in Montville Township.

Butterfly Bonanza is packed with excitement, entertainment, and education for all ages. Enjoy a guided ‘Bug Safari’ tour of ...

Superheros to the Rescue! Over 900 Runners Run the 2018 Superhero Half Marathon

May 21, 2018

MORRIS TOWNSHIP, NJ -  Who is the strongest superhero? There has been some debate on the internet as to who the strongest superheros are. According to, it is Sentry (3rd),  Thor (2nd) and The Hulk (1st) who top their list. However, it might just be the 900 runners that were strong enough to participate in the 2018 Superhero Half Marathon on Sunday May 20 at Ginty Field in ...

10-Year Old Boy Battling Cancer Receives Generous Donation From Randolph Hockey Family

RANDOLPH, NJ- While the inter-town hockey battles on the ice between Randolph and Roxbury are fierce at every age level, when it comes to real life battles off the ice there is no hesitation to offer help to their neighbor.

Such is the case with a recent gesture of unity and support from the Randolph Varsity hockey team, when they came together to deliver good wishes and ...

Peter Toth to Perform a Free Piano Recital at the Morristown Historical Park; Sunday May 20

MORRISTOWN, NJ - The community is invited to Washington's Headquarters Museum on Sunday May 20 to enjoy a piano recital featuring Hungarian pianist Peter Toth.

The free piano recital will take place at 1pm at the national Historical Park's Washington Headquarters Museum; 30 Washington Place.

Toth will play the park's 1873 Steinway Grand piano that will ...

The Kootz at Macculloch Hall Historical Museum

May 15, 2018

MORRISTOWN, NJ - Stop by the Macculloch Hall Historical Museum to hear The Kootz perform a medley of blues, pop, and rock from the 60s-90s on July 1 from 2-3pm.

Break out the picnic blanket or beach chairs and join us in our historic garden Sundays at 2:00 pm for a selection of music and poetry.

$10 per adult, FREE for members!

Rain or shine. In the case of inclement ...

Three Bloomfield Teens Are Missing, Police Seek Community Assistance to Locate Them

BLOOMFIELD, NJ - The Bloomfield Police Department is asking for the public's assistance to locate three teenagers who went missing this week. One of the parents reports that a large sum of money is missing suggesting the three may have fled the state. 

16-year-old Ulises Yance and 15-year-old Alex Lopez were last seen Fridaymornin, and 16-year-old Alexa Arenas was last seen ...

In London Town - NJFO Season Finale

On Saturday May 19 and Sunday May 20, the New Jersey Festival Orchestra, under the baton of David Wroe, presents a magnificent 35th anniversary season finale celebration of music linked in some way to England and its great city of London.

The concert opens with Sir Edward Elgar’s exhilarating Introduction and Allegro for Strings, a work composed in 1905 to enable the string section ...

Parents of Dangled Roxbury Kid File Lawsuit Warning

May 20, 2018

ROXBURY, NJ - The parents of a 6-year-old special needs student who, according to authorities, was hung upside down and shaken by a frustrated teacher's aide in March, filed a notice of tort claim today, the first volley of a forthcoming lawsuit.

The notice says the Landing couple intend to sue the aide, the Roxbury school board, a number of school  administrators and ...

Offshore Drilling Endangers 2 National Parks in New Jersey

May 25, 2018


 Acadia, Fort Sumter, Everglades, Olympic National Parks and Others in 18 States at Risk; Huge Potential Impact Seen on $5.7 Billion in Coastal Park Economic Output, 84 Million Annual Visits, and 60,000 Jobs.

WASHINGTON, DC – The Trump ...

Living longer is in your control

Research published this week in the journal Circulation, reported findings of a 34 year study on over 100,000 people found five modifiable lifestyle     
 behaviors associated with a 14 year longer life expectancy in women and a 12 year long life expectancy in men at age 50. The health behaviors related to longer life included never smoking, eating a healthy diet, ...

Sneak Peek! Highly Desirable Lake Mohawk 3BR

Longing to live the lake lifestyle? Today's your lucky day! Take a sneak peek at our newest home available in Sparta's highly desirable Lake Mohawk community, and get ready for our OPEN HOUSE Saturday, June 2nd from 1pm-3pm.

This 3 bedroom, 2 bath home at 137 Hillside Road, Sparta, features a wood burning insert in the living room fireplace, perfect ...

The Queen of the Big Time by Adriana Trigiani (Ballentine Books, 2005)

            The Queen of the Big Time by Adriana Trigiani, a New York Times best selling author, was recommended to me by a young woman who actually came from the town of Roseto, Pennsylvania, the place where the novel is set. “The author did such a wonderful job of describing how the town actually is,” said the young lady.

'Turning Off the Morning News' brings comic twist

‘Turning Off the Morning News’ tackles today’s issues with a comic twist

By Liz Keill

PRINCETON, N J – Despite the late night comics, no one quite captures the insanity of the political/social status world like Christopher Durang.

His latest play, “Turning off the Morning News” hit the ground running.  John Pankow as Jimmy addresses the audience, ...

Letter to the Editor: Gum Litter and what YOU can do about it

May 14, 2018

Gum is non-biodegradable, meaning it doesn't’t break down ever….

Today, the unlikely problem surfaces. The average person chews 275 sticks of gum per year. With the amount of people in daily society, it’s no mystery why chewing gum is the second most littered item after cigarette butts.  Did you know that gum is banned in Singapore?

In addition to littering human ...

Candidate Statement: May is Older Americans Month: Time to Give Back to Morris County’s Seniors Every Day!

May 24, 2018

The June 5th Primary has entered the home stretch.  For the first time in 8 weeks, there is no where I need to appear other than at the doorstep of a registered voter to ask for their support in the election booth.

Since I decided to pursue the open Freeholder seat in March, I have been all across Morris County.  I have been out and away from my family every day since, attending such ...

Congressional Candidate Tony Ghee Candidate Statement

With the retirement of longtime Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen, the good people of Morris, Essex, Sussex and Passaic Counties will elect a new representative this November. It also means that our Republican Party has a choice to make, as well.

Do we nominate a career politician in an age when most people don’t trust their government or the people serving, or do we seize this ...

Warrants, DWI and Narcotics Top This Week Police Blotter

May 14, 2018

4/23: ARREST FOR NARCOTICS: Officers were dispatched to the Mahlon Dickerson Reservation in Jefferson Township on a report of a noise complaint. An investigation led to Rebecca L. Schank-Smith, age 22, of Bloomingdale, and Delia A. Gutierrez, age 23, of Lincoln Park, to be charged with Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance. They were both released with a court date pending.

4/23: ...

Loyola Celebrates 2017-2018 At Annual Banquet

May 25, 2018


Loyola Celebrates 2017-2018 At Annual Banquet

Donna Woodruff presents Frankie Kamely (left) and Brian Begley with the Lagna and Mohler Awards.
April 30, 2018

BALTIMORE - Loyola University Maryland seniors Frankie Kamely and Brian Begley were the 2018 recipients of ...