Archaeologists Uncover an Ancient Wine Bar in France

© Sarah Case

By Justine Sterling Posted February 18, 2016

The coolest place to be in 1st century AD?

France’s Languedoc-Roussillon region is known for its dark, complex red blends and zesty, refreshing whites like those made with the lip-smacking Picpoul grape. Apparently, the oenophilic traditions run deep in the region because archaeologists recently discovered remnants of an ancient tavern, thought to be around 2,100 years old, in a Languedoc town called Lattara.

According to The Drinks Business, the excavation team found evidence of three ovens, gristmills, benches (suggesting the tavern was a dine-in situation rather than a takeout joint), a central hearth and Italian-made drinking vessels, presumably used to drink a variety of wines. Bones from sheep, cattle and fish suggest that the menu was also fairly extensive.

There is a possibility, though, that the site was not an ancient watering hole but a really well-outfitted private dining establishment since, as USA Today reports, archaeologists didn’t turn up any coins. Either way, we know that whoever inhabited or frequented the structure certainly enjoyed their vino. “They were eating a fair amount,” archaeologist Benjamin Luley told USA Today. “But the most common ceramic object we found are drinking cups.”

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