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Georgian winemaking method joins UNESCO heritage list


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  1. Hi, Jason:

    Gosh, I wish the article had a few more details. Is this a form of carbonic maceration? How long does the must remain in the jars? Oh, well...


    10 Replies
    1. re: kaleokahu


      Caught a BBC Radio 4 food programme last year on wine trends.Had a piece on Georgian wine manking. Starts at 07:50.



      1. re: kaleokahu

        Pheasant's Tears makes the best of the Georgian wines I've had, they have some info here:


        Everything you might want to know about it:


        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          Hi, Robert:

          This is fascinating, thank you. Tight temperature management, seed-induced tartrate precipitation and minimized exposure to lees in the limed (outside), beeswaxed (inside), buried amphora-shaped vessels is all brilliant. As is ash-washing (can we say Proxycarb?). One-step (at least 6 months) airlocked pottery fermentors/barriques in sizes to 1500L is simply amazing.

          I can now see why UNESCO acted. Thank you again.


          1. re: kaleokahu

            I'd be more amazed if I liked more of the resulting wines.

            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              Yes, well, there IS that . . . .

              Ahhh, I have fond memories of drinking a bottle of Georgian wine while sitting under that statue of Karl Marx across from the Hotel Metropole in Moscow back in 1968 . . . though, come to think of it, I remember the girl more than the wine.

              1. re: Robert Lauriston

                You recommend the Pheasant's Tears? And which one(s)?

                1. re: kaleokahu


                  1. re: Robert Lauriston


                  2. re: kaleokahu

                    their Shavkapito and Rkatseteli are also yummy

              2. re: Robert Lauriston

                Took a 10 day private tour with a friend last summer in Georgia. John Wurdeman, the owner of Pheasant's Tears, supplied the tour driver, guide and everything else. It was totally wonderful. Pheasant's Tears makes some good Saperavi and we tasted over 200 wines on the tour, some good, some fair, and some extraordinary. Lots of fun. Would recommend to anyone.

            2. Would Francesco Joško Gravner's winemaking classify as "Georgian" ?


              10 Replies
              1. re: OscarFox

                That's where he got the idea and bought his amphorae.


                If you speak Italian:


                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                  These are great stories.

                  Years ago, at Anapa on the Black Sea, I had local wines that were, in the tradition, sweet. I wondered what wold happen if a first-rate winemaker from France or Chile--you name it--went there and tried his hand? I'd still like to see what could happen.

                  I've had some very nice Georgian wines in Russia but I cannot tell you the names and that is entirely my fault.

                  1. re: hazelhurst

                    Fortunately the Russian boycott of Georgian wines is ending...in Moscow last May, i had to drink overpriced French wine in their Georgian restaurants...

                    1. re: Simon

                      "Overpriced" and"moscow" go hand-in-hand and it is dispiriting to hear that you were put through that. Your news on Georgian wine is welcome, though.(Although I am sure you know the Georgian stuff was always available...it is Russia, after all, and many of us love it.)

                      1. re: hazelhurst

                        yes, available but not on the menu, easily served, etc :)

                        A nice silver-lining of this was that i did get to try some yummy full-bodied Azerbaijani wine, at one of my fav places Ckaska Vostoka (near Park Kulturney metro, on a moored boat on the river)...actually it quickly became my fav restaurant in the city, and bizarrely reasonable....

                        1. re: Simon

                          STOP! you are breaking my heart! No, no..sing on...you give me cause for hope on my return. Thank you, thank you, thank you...

                          1. re: hazelhurst

                            here :)

                            1. re: Simon

                              Oh, you are cruel...how can I repay you for a Slavic bond?

                              Many many thanks

                    2. re: hazelhurst

                      My impression is that the sweet wines were made to please the Russians. The post-Soviet wines I've had have all been dry.

                      Numerous winemakers in California have been experimenting with various Georgian techniques. Dr. Frank makes some Rkatsiteli in New York.

                      1. re: Robert Lauriston

                        The sparkling wines around Anapa were almost all sweet of demi-sec but I'd guess some good dry stuff could be mae. Some of the dry Georgians I had in Moscow about 15 years ago were very, very nice.