WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY

Our winemaking philosophy considers our tremendous natural heritage first and foremost. Our main aim is to balance tradition and experience with contemporary innovations. Consequently, the cornerstones of our winemaking philosophy can be summarized as follows:

- Great wines are created in the vineyard; that’s the starting point of our winemaking philosophy. Sustainable practices coupled with a tremendous amount of labor allow us to keep our vines in balance and to manage our reduced yields. We crave to take maximum advantage of local conditions to produce world-class wines, which are uniquely Georgian.

- A wine can only be as good as the grapes from which it is produced. We work with great grape growers to develop the best fruit in the vineyard. We pick the grapes at optimal ripeness and gently process the fruit. Only clean and fresh fruit produces superior wine and, as such, we individually bunch sort all of our white wine varietals and bunch sort and then individual berry sort all of our red wine varietals.

- Gentle handling of the wine throughout the winemaking process. Crafting fine wine requires relentless commitment. We constantly evolve time-honored methods to incorporate the most innovative processes and technology in our quest to perfect the art of winemaking. What we try to do is to provide a gentle hand in the winemaking process, easing the grapes through something they want to do naturally anyway.

- Patience, patience, patience, and then just a bit more patience in order to allow the fruit to speak for itself. We will not release a wine if we do not believe that it meets our precise quality standards.


SAPERAVI

Georgian red grape variety presented in Kakheti and other regions of Georgia. Saperavi reaches full ripening started from the second half of September with the harvest-time lasting to the end of October. Saperavi’s average yield per hectare amounts to 8-10 tons. Wines produced from Saperavi (Vins de Tables as well as AOC’s) are suitable for extended aging and is also used for producing naturally sweet wines and roses.

Principal micro-zones: Mukuzani, Akhasheni, Khashmi, Kindzmarauli, Napareuli, Khvareli, Kondoli.

RKATSITELI

A white-grape variety grown mainly in the Kakheti region but it is also present in other regions of Georgia. In Kakheti, it reaches full ripening started from mid-September and up to the beginning of October. For producing superb wines its yield from a hectare shouldn’t exceed seven or eight tones. In Georgia, Rkatsiteli is used for making both, classic (European) and typical Kakhetian, amphora (Kvevri) fermented Vins de Table, Vins de Pays and AOC’s. The Rkatsiteli wine material is often blended with Kakhetian Mtsvane. Rkatsiteli also produces a large range of white wines, from fortified to ice-wines.


KISI

Georgian white-grape variety mainly grown in East Georgia. The medium maturity Kisi reaches full ripening by mid to late September. Its Productivity amounts to 6-8 tons per-hectare. It is used for making both, classic (European) and typical Kakhetian, amphora (qvevri) fermented and fortified wines.

Principal micro-zones: Telavi, Khvareli, Akhmeta districts..

 BRIEF HISTORY OF GEORGIAN WINEMAKING

The basic written source "Oxford Companion to Wine" declares that the history of the wine tradition finds its roots in the fertile valleys of South Caucasus - in the country of Georgia. Many claim that the wine culture was given life together with the birth of Georgia. Grape seeds dated back to 7-6 thousand years B.C. and the 3000 year-old huge clay jugs discovered during excavations from ancient settlements prove this assumption. Some even consider that a generic world "wine" stems from the Georgian word "ghvino".

The knowledge and skills of wine-making in Georgia were widely acknowledged in the ancient world. Many outstanding figures of antiquity, such as Apollo of Rhodes, Strabon and Procopious of Caesaria mentioned Transcaucasus and specifically the territory of Georgia in their works as the land of the first known cultured grape varieties. It was also from here that the wine and traditional method of wine-making in Kvevri (pitchers) were spread further to Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece and the rest of the world. Vessels similar to Kvevri were found in the Roman Empire, where they were called "Dolium", in Greece "Pithos" and in Spain "Tinaja".

The ancient people of South Caucasus discovered the mysterious transformation of wild grape juice into wine by leaving it in clay vessels called Kvevri, buried in the ground. This knowledge was then slightly developed and refined over the centuries. The production and consumption phases have been developed over thousands of years to the present time, and Kvevri still maintain the same importance in wine-making as ever before in South Caucasus. Many Georgian families constantly and strongly follow their rich culture of making wine. They own special places called Marani on the cellar floor beneath their houses, where they ferment their own wine in the cool earth with different sizes of buried kvevries.

Kvevries are believed to be the best earthenware artefacts discovered by Georgian archaeologists. In fact, the Georgian craft of pottery is millennia old. Ancient artefacts reflect and clearly define the high skills of Georgian craftsmen in whose hands water, clay and fire turned into the fusion of the giant vessels of exceptional beauty reflecting the all-time history of this ancient culture.

Thousands years of knowledge, tradition and excellence have contributed to the development of the unique and exciting grape varietals from which Georgian wines are made. 500 sorts of vine, of 4000 registered throughout the world, are Georgian. Famous sorts of Georgian wines are Rkatsiteli, Manavi, Napareuli, Tibaani, Tsinandali, Vazisubani, Mukuzani, Saperavi, Kindzmarauli, Khvanchkara, Ojaleshi, etc.

Today, wine once again holds a central place in every Georgians' life, and generally the whole Georgian culture. One can find many farmers in different wine-making regions of Georgia producing their own wine and enjoying particular pleasure in seeing guests tasting it. This shows the significance of these traditions, even in the modern world and it makes our work, to preserve the art of making Kvevries as part of the traditional Georgian method of wine-making, so important.