Wine Inspired Quotations

On The Grapevine- July 2012   



By Bro Mike , Wine Correspondent


For more than 8000 years of civilisation wine has been referenced in literature and poetry. From the world's earliest writers to the quips of today's wits, the essence of wine has been recorded.


Homer may have been one of the first writers outside of the Bible to write about wine. At least he is one of the writers that left behind the written proof. The "fruit of the Gods" has been romanticized in prose, uttered in jest or memorialized in the pages of the world’s history. From the time of Homer, the Roman’s and Greek’s worship of Wine gods, to the utterance of Dom Pérignon's exclamation when he tasted Champagne...“Come quickly, I am tasting the stars,” wine is a worthy subject of quotes.


Drinking wine has been a journey to find the essence and message of the wine master and enjoyment of the tastes created. When a glass of wine is poured; the cork is popped, the wine is splashed in the glass—the senses and mind have been engaged and are eagerly awaiting the taste. Only wine has inspired and created the volume of quotes in literature and popular culture including some from our illustrious masonic brothers of the past.


Here are some of my favourites:


From antiquity:

Mankind possesses two supreme blessings. First of these is the goddess Demeter, or Earth whichever name you choose to call her by. It was she who gave to man his nourishment of grain. But after her there came the son of Semele (Dionysus), who matched her present by inventing liquid wine as his gift to man. For filled with that good gift, suffering mankind forgets its grief; from it comes sleep; with it oblivion of the troubles of the day. There is no other medicine for misery. Euripides, The Bacchae

The wine urges me on, the bewitching wine, which sets even a wise man to singing and to laughing gently and rouses him up to dance and brings forth words which were better unspoken.  Homer, The Odyssey or

And wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. The Odyssey of Homer as translated by Alexander Pope

Wine gives strength to weary men.  Homer, Iliad

I like best the wine drunk at the cost of others.  Diogenes the Cynic

The great evil of wine is that it first seizes the feet, it is a crafty wrestler. Titus Maccius Plautus

The profound:

Wine Quotes

I am falser than vows made in wine.

O thou invisible spirit of wine! if thou hast no name to be known by, let us call thee devil! William Shakespeare

One of the disadvantages of wine is that it makes a man mistake words for thoughts.

Wine makes a man more pleased with himself, I do not say it makes him more pleasing to others. Dr Samuel Johnson

Letters are like wine; if they are sound they ripen with keeping. A man should lay down letters as he does a cellar of wine.

If the headache preceded the intoxication, alcoholism would be a virtue. Samuel Butler

Robert Louis Stevenson

Wine is bottled poetry. Robert Louis Stevenson

Due to the heavy wine fog all further thoughts have been temporarily suspended. Anon

It is well to remember that there are five reasons for drinking: the arrival of a friend; one's present or future thirst; the excellence of the wine; or any other reason.  a Latin saying.

Benjamin Franklin

From a Masonic brother during the enlightenment:

Wine is a constant proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Wine makes daily living easier, less hurried, with fewer tensions and more tolerance.

The discovery of a wine is of greater moment than the discovery of a constellation. The universe is too full of stars. all Benjamin Franklin

Thomas Jefferson

Good wine is a necessity of life for me.

I have lived temperately....I double the doctor's recommendation of a glass and a half of wine each day and even treble it with a friend.

Wine ... the true old man's milk and restorative cordial.

I think it is a great error to consider a heavy tax on wines as a tax on luxury. On the contrary, it is a tax on the health of our citizens.

No nation is drunken where wine is cheap, and none sober where the dearness of wine substitutes ardent spirits as the common beverage. all Thomas Jefferson

Wine toasts:

Here's to friendship, the wine of life, let's drink of it and to it.

May our wine brighten the mind and strengthen the resolution.

May we always have old wines, old friends and young cares.

Pour deep the rosy wine and drink a toast with me; Here's to three: wine, thee and camaraderie. All anon

Wine and age:

Forsake not an old friend; for the new is not comparable to him: a new friend is as new wine; when it is old, thou shalt drink it with pleasure. Ecclesiastes

Neither do men put new wine into old bottles. The Gospel According to Saint Matthew

Wine improves with age, the older I get the better I like it.

Like a fine wine I'm not getting older, I'm becoming more complex.

Age doesn't matter unless you're a wine.

A grape in time makes wine.

Aging like a fine wine requires a lot of time lying down.

At my age Happy Hour is a nap. All anon

Health and wine:

Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach's sake .The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to Timothy

Wine a little, you'll feel better.

A bartender is just a pharmacist with an aged inventory.

People always want to know what makes my skin glow. It's easy...Cabernet , Merlot and Chardonnay with an occasional Brandy. All anon

Wine, friendship and love:

Wine gives us liberty, love takes it away.

Wine makes us princes, love makes us beggars. William Wycherley

He who loves not wine, women and song remains a fool his whole life long. Attributed to Martin Luther or Johann Heinrich Voss 

The best use of bad wine is to drive away poor relations.  French proverb

Wine drinkers make grape lovers.

Friendship is the wine of life.

Here's to cold nights, warm friends, and a good wine to give them.

I'd rather spend time with a good bottle of wine than with bad company.

When wine goes in, secrets come out. All anon

Religion and wine:

There is a devil in every berry of the grape. The Qu'ran

Wine is the first weapon that devils use in attacking the young. St. Jerome

A little saint best fits a little shrine, 
A little prop best fits a little vine, 
As my small cruse (jar) best fits my little wine.  Robert Herrick

God made only water, but man made wine.  Victor Hugo

Thou hast showed thy people hard things: Thou hast made us to drink the wine of astonishment. The Book of Psalms

Wine that maketh glad the heart of man. The Book of Psalms

Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts.
Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.  The Proverbs

A feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry: but money answereth all things. Ecclesiastes

How much better is thy love than wine!  The Song of Solomon

Like the best wine that goeth down sweetly, causing the lips of those that are asleep to speak. The Song of Solomon

Drink wine, and you will sleep well. Sleep, and you will not sin. Avoid sin, and you will be saved. Ergo, drink wine and be saved.  Medieval German saying (my motto)

Wine and humour:

I feel sorry for the people who don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day. Frank Sinatra

What contemptible scoundrel stole the cork from my lunch.

Once... in the wilds of Afghanistan, I lost my corkscrew, and we were forced to live on nothing but food and water for days.

I cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.

I was in love with a beautiful blonde once. She drove me to drink; that's the one thing I'm indebted to her for. all W. C. Fields

I only drink wine on days ending in "y". Anon.

Who better  to sum it all up than the modern Homer himself:

Alcohol - the cause of and solution to all of life's problems.  Homer Simpson