Why should you get to know Georgian wines? Because they’re exciting - Washington Post
01 September, 2015
  Why should you get to know Georgian wines? Because they’re exciting - Washington Post
The Washington Post has just recently published an article on Georgian wines by Dave McIntyre . The article tells the readers why they should get acquainted with Georgian wines. Among the reasons listed by the author, one stands out in particular - they are simply exciting.

Here is the article itself:

"We tend to think of the classic vinifera wine grape varieties as European, meaning French, Italian and Spanish. But vinifera’s origin lies to the east, in the Caucasus region:
where Europe and Asia intersect, where ancient trade routes crisscrossed the mountains between the Black Sea and Persia, and near where the Bible says Noah planted a vineyard after the ark settled on Mount Ararat. This is where the oldest archaeological evidence of wine production, vinifera seeds in clay vessels, was found. Both Georgia and Armenia claim to be wine’s homeland, as borders have been fluid between antiquity and now. But let’s tip our hats to Georgia as the origin of wine, if only because more of its wines are available now in the United States.

And Georgia’s wines are exciting. The country offers everything a modern wine geek could ask for: native vinifera grape varieties grown almost nowhere else; modern-style wines that capture those grapes’ fruity flavors; and wines fermented the way Georgians have done it for centuries, offering us a taste of the past. It doesn’t hurt that the old style has become trendy. Even better: The wines are not expensive.

“Georgia is a small country with a tiny production but an image and potential that far exceed its size,” said Lisa Granik, a master of wine, during a presentation of Georgian wines at Vinexpo, an international trade fair held in Bordeaux, France, in June.

Much of Georgia’s image and popularity comes from its ancient practice of fermenting wine in qvevri, clay vessels buried underground. Most modern white wines are made by quickly separating the pressed juice from the grapes’ skins, stems and seeds. In the ancient method, the juice, skins, stems and seeds go into the qvevri to ferment together. The result can be deeply colored, oxidized and tannic, with some of the features of red wines. Winemakers often describe this method (whether using clay vessels or not) as “making white wine as if it were red.”

Skin-fermented whites are trendy today as “orange wines,” although Mamuka Tsereteli, a Georgian native who imports wines from his homeland into the Washington area, prefers to call them “amber wines.” They aren’t very citrusy, after all.

“Georgia has nearly 500 native grape varieties,” Tsereteli explained to me while we tasted some of his imports at Batch 13, a wine store on 14th Street NW owned by George Grigolia, a fellow Georgian. Tsereteli’s company, the Georgian Wine House, imports Georgian wines distributed in the District, Maryland, Virginia and five other states.

Georgia’s main wine region is Kakheti, in the eastern part of the country, where the Caucasus mountains stretch from northwest to southeast. Although wine is grown throughout most of the country, Tsereteli said, farther west toward the Black Sea the landscape is flatter and sandier, less amenable to high-quality grape growing.

The most common grapes in wines imported to the United States are rkatsiteli and mtsvane among whites, and the red saperavi. (Each letter is pronounced, more or less, so the names are not as difficult as they look.) Made in the modern style, the whites are crisp and fruity; made as amber wines, they tend to be rich and full-bodied.

Reds made in qvevri in the ancient style can be sweet, because in cooler temperatures the fermentation might stop before all the grape sugar is converted to alcohol. Because sweet reds are in vogue nowadays, these wines should find a market. Saperavi can also be quite savory, with tobacco leaf and dark-fruit flavors. In texture and taste, it resembles a cabernet franc from the Loire Valley in France.

But a good saperavi, like most Georgian wines, has what wines from anywhere else don’t have: a taste that spans centuries of history, and a whiff of ancient origins", reads the article.

www.washingtonpost.com
Print
Other Stories
“Georgian people welcome a guest as an angel” – personal experience of resigned US soldier in Georgia
Georgia has become an inspiration for many people, from politicians to writers and singers. The latest, for who Georgia has tuned into country of new discoveries is a former US soldier... This is what he tells Georgian Journal.
Tbilisi selected as Best European Destinations 2020 contestant
Tbilisi has been selected as a contestant for the Best European Destinations 2020 competition, Tbilisi Mayor Kakha Kaladze said at the municipal government meeting.
Georgia celebrates National Flag Day
Today on the 14th of January Georgia celebrates National Flag Day.
Number of international visitors to Georgia surge in 2019
Over 9 million international visits, 5 million tourist visits were made to Georgia in 2019.
Unique Qvevri-made whisky by Alexander Distillery
Whisky is a strong alcoholic beverage, an aromatic drink, which is made from fermented grain mash in oak barrels.
Forbidden Christmas, repressed Santa Clause and Christmas trees from gloomy 90s of Georgia
In the past, Christmas trees in Georgia used to be decorated with religious ornaments and accessories as an indication of the holy-day.
Gona – little Switzerland in Racha, Georgia
Gona is a small village in Oni Municipality, in the region of Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti.
Five Things About Kartuli That’ll Make You Say “Vaime!”
Home to a history that spans millennia and one of the world’s most diverse (and delicious!) cuisines, Georgia’s got a lot to brag about.
Four seasons are not enough! - Well known campaign takes new turn
The online campaign #spendyoursummeringeorgia was extended to four seasons. And it will keep growing, as Keta Goletiani, one of the founders explains.
On the stairways to heaven
It is not very easy to access the Katskhi pillar in the western Imereti region. But it’s worth your time as “CNN travel” states after they hit the road.
Beshumi to Ushguli: Four days in paradise
Georgian Photographer Giorgi Shermazanashvili made a trip from Beshumi to Ushguli. His pictures capture the great beauty of Georgia's west.
First snow arrives in Kazbegi (Watch video)
It is end of August and the first snow has already arrived in Kazbegi.
Easy summer destinations for Tbilisi travellers
Summer is the busiest period in terms of tourism. Here are 4 places a foreign visitor should see in Georgia, Tbilisi to experience city’s modern and traditional mix.
Sakartvelo TOP-1 – Why is Georgia number 1 for the Belarusian photographer?
Georgia among Georgians is called Sakartvelo. This is the name how the Belarusian tourist calls this country.
American diplomat about Georgia: “Every single city has left me wanting more”
Kristen Crocker, American Diplomat has recently visited Georgia.
Forbes: “Georgia (The Country) Is On Everyone’s Mind”
Forbes, an American business magazine, has recently published an article about Georgia.
Amazon Jungle in Georgia - Kolkheti National Park
Kolkheti National Park is located in the western part of Georgia and intends to protect the wetland nature of Kolkheti.
Abudelauri Colorful Lakes – Magical Place to See In Georgia
A Magical, mysterious place, home of the Khevsuretian Gods, with a view of spectacular Chiukhi Mountain,
Koruldi Lakes in Svaneti – Heaven On Earth
Koruldi Lakes is one of the most magical places in Georgia.
Svaneti – the most untouched place by the outside world
French photographer Julien Pebrel traveled to Georgia last summer.
5 must-see lesser-known places in Kakheti
Kakheti is located in the eastern part of Georgia.
Euronews: "Batumi as a center of youth culture"
Euronews has recently published an article about Batumi, a seaside town in Georgia.
Russian tourist in Batumi explains why Russians should not come to Georgia
It has been more than a week since demonstrations have started in Tbilisi and are held daily.
How "Spend Your Summer in Georgia" campaign started?
The group includes around 207 000 members of Facebook and it has been only couple of days since the campaign was launched.
Why Georgia? – Photographer Eddy Li speaks about his experience
As the number of tourists coming to Georgia rises, so does the number of international photographers.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
18.01.2020
19.01.2020
USD
1
USD
2.8781
2.8781
EUR
1
EUR
3.2002
3.2002
GBP
1
GBP
3.7556
3.7556
RUB
100
RUB
4.6888
4.6888