Today, we meet the Burgundians, the people Burgundy is named after. Oddly enough, their initial influence doesn’t stem from wine so much, but rather a role in a nation’s changing identity.

As the Roman Empire was dissolving in the 5th century A.D., climate changes snuffed out the crops and resources on the island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea. The island was never very fertile to begin with, being that it’s mostly made up of granite, but once food supplies ran dry, the barbarians of Bornholm fled to the south in search of a better life.

These folks were the Burgundians, and as they made their way into France, they were met with animosity from other tribes that were filling the vacuum opened by the dying Roman Empire. To put it bluntly, a lot of royal messiness followed, and the Burgundians were eventually pushed to the east of the Rhine River. By the year 534, the Franks had conquered the Burgundians and absorbed them into the then-blossoming Frankish Empire.

On this episode of “Wine 101,” Keith gets into the finer details of how Burgundy became Burgundy, and talks about the people who gave this region its name. How did the kingdom of Burgundy form and how do vines and wines play into the mix? Tune in for more.

Listen Online

Listen on Apple Podcasts

Listen on Spotify

Follow Keith on Instagram @VinePairKeith. Rate and review this podcast wherever you get your podcasts from. It really helps get the word out there.

“Wine 101” was produced, recorded, and edited by yours truly, Keith Beavers, at the VinePair headquarters in New York City. I want to give a big old shout-out to co-founders Adam Teeter and Josh Malin for creating VinePair. Big shout-out to Danielle Grinberg, the art director of VinePair, for creating the most awesome logo for this podcast. Also, Darby Cicci for the theme song. And I want to thank the entire VinePair staff for helping me learn something new every day. See you next week.

*Image retrieved from Swapan via