As you may or may not be aware, our shop in the English Market was 10 years old last September. Though we’re proud of our longevity, it doesn’t take long to be reminded that someone else was there first; for example this story, found while reading my favourite online, English language, Caucasus news source, the Armenian Weekly
Archaeologists working in an Armenian cave have recently unearthed a wine press from 4000BC. At six millenia old, it is by far the earliest wine making device ever recovered. It came complete with ancient grape seeds and a desiccated vine nearby.
Expert opinion suggests that it was in place beside an important burial site, supposedly to provide a special drink for mourners (some things never change). Biochemical techniques have been used to discover that the wine produced was a dry red vintage (some things never, ever change).
Perhaps most interestingly, the same cave last year yielded the world’s oldest leather shoe at 5,500 years old. Despite this five-century discrepancy, it seems safe to assume that the grapes were indeed pressed by bare feet!