Birth in Roman times, blossoming out in 17th century
The occupation of France by the Romans contributed towards the advent of vine-growing, including in the Beaujolais region. Archaeological research has shown that from as early as 59 BC wine drinking was prevalent along the big roads that went through the area.
Well-positioned terroir, the proximity of the navigable Saône and Rhône Rivers and the growth of towns together lead to the Beaujolais region intensifying its vinegrowing and winemaking activity in 17th century.
The Beaujolais winemaking region's jam-packed history can be followed through just after the warrings of the Sires de Beaujeu, the first of whom, Bérard, is known to us through a record of his viticultural transactions dated 957 AD(!) through evolution and innovation in the field that include agricultural companies, schools, mechanical and chemical solutions, the arrival of the railway followed by good roads. From as early as the 15th century the vines that were planted be-tween the indispensable pasture fields drew the Lyon bourgeoisie. Because they enjoyed a right to sell their wines with no added taxes the worthies of the time increased their standing with the Paris smart set with their "clairet" light coloured honest country wine. The French Revolution brought premises of classi-fication that were concretised with the first AOCs in 1936.