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23 September, 2021

Rtveli in Georgia

Category: Information

Aside from having a long history of constant defense and fighting for freedom, which we are famous with for the rest of the world, there is probably another thing we can be proud of. You can discover more than 500 varieties of grapes here and a unique way of winemaking, which can be a simple routine for some people, but for many, it is the most important event, almost a holiday, named Rtveli. In Georgia, it starts at the end of August and can last even until December in some regions. Early grape harvest, of course, begins in eastern Georgia, particularly in Dedoplistskaro, and ends in the western regions. However, Rtveli is not just about picking grapes, and for many, it is the special period by the end of the year. Although there are common family traditions, such as baskets breaded especially for this day, a slaughtered animal, or baked bread, still the families have their traditions and it may be impossible for some families to spend a sunny vintage day without the Lobiani (Georgian Bean Pie) prepared by the hostess. In some places, it has become a tradition to bake Dedas Puri (literally mother's bread) or sing the song "Autumn has come" in the process of grape picking. The vintage is especially associated with the Kakheti region and consequently, the main priority of the population of this area is the maintenance of the vineyards. The process, which at first glance is associated with only one day, is the result of a year of hard work; the vineyard needs special care throughout the year, which includes pruning, vine transplanting, spraying vines, tillage. All the work is done during different seasons of the year. Eventually, the process ends with harvesting in the fall, though it is not final, as the pruned branches are collected, or pressed, and prepared for the future. Right after this, starts the process of pressing the grapes and as a result, wine is made, something where, according to the Latin expression, there is a truth. Wine is what has been attracting tourists to Georgia for years. There are many hotels in Kakheti, where you can visit a vineyard or a cellar. One such hotel is "Ampelo", located in the village of Kardenakhi, a small cellar of which makes its Italian appearance even prettier.

One of the interesting things for tourists is to listen to the stories about the traditions of winemaking and its storage. They can not only visit the numerous wineries in Georgia but also taste the wine directly from the Qvevri. Historical Qvevri and its abundance in our small country is an important topic. There are many wine festivals during this season. Racha region is particularly active in this regard, which is quite famous for the wine "Khvanchkara", which is produced by mixing two varieties of wine we find here, Aleksandrouli and Mujuretuli, and red semi-sweet wine is ready! Although Racha is a small region for winemaking, here we find the unique varieties of grapes, and most of the population has a small pergola along with the vineyards.

Compared to the eastern region, western Georgia was less associated with vintage, but we should not forget the dominant grape variety from Guria - Adesa - and the endangered, forgotten, though very delicious grape variety - Chkhaveri. This variety needs special care and requires a lot of hard work, but after tasting the wine made from it, a person will think it was worth it.

Tags: #tradition #Harvest #Grape #Vineyard
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