During the decade of 1970’s, many foreign visitors came to Iran for business or as tourist. They all loved Iranian food and hospitality. There were many young Americans who came to Iran, serving in various cities or villages as peace corp. One of the visitors was a French professor who came to spend his sabbatical year in our institution. He was a friendly, middle age man, who smoked a lot.
Once we invited him to a Persian restaurant. After he ordered salad, kashk bademjan, and kebab with rice, tomato, etc. we ordered a bottle of Rezaieh wine for him, knowing that French people like wine with their food. That wine was very popular in Iran at the time, and if I remember correct, was called Pakdis (please correct me if I am wrong).
He finished his dinner, lighted a cigarette, and asked us, “What kind of wine is this?”
We told him, it is a local wine produced in Rezaieh, Iran. He said, “This is one of the best wines I have ever had”. Then he proposed to us to collaborate with him, and export that wine to France. We thought he is joking, and told him that, France produces some of the best wines in the world. He said. “Good wines like flowers; each has special flavor, unique taste and color”. He thought ours was one of the best in the world!
Of course, we did not accept his invitation to jointly export that wine to France, because we had never done any business, and did not have courage to take a risk! We were used to live on a fixed salary! (Hoghoogh begir). However, a few years later, when revolution happened, we were happy we made the right decision!
After the Revolution of 1979, productions of that wine was prohibited. At first, their product was distributed as grape juice and apple juice. But when the owners gradually moved out of Iran, those wineries gradually were damaged or destroyed. I have heard that some of the original owners went to Australia and California, and they were the ones who initiated Shiraz Wine!