Saperavi

Saperavi means “something to colour with,” or “to dye”. A very old variety, Saperavi is Georgia’s most widely planted red grape, with 10% of all plantings throughout the country (over 4000 ha). Saperavi can be dry, semi-sweet, full-on sweet, or fortified. Both traditional and European methods are used, and it may be aged in French,…

Tavkveri

This red grape, evocatively named “hammerhead,” for the flat top of the berry itself, is indigenous to Kartli but also grown in Kakheti. Tavkveri grows well in deep clay and sandy soils. Tavkveri can bud the end of March through middle April, and matures between the end of August through to the middle of September.…

Shavkapito

Meaning “vine with a black cane,” Shavkapito originated in Kartli, in eastern Georgia. Its medium-sized, conical bunches typically have wings and moderate density. The round, medium-sized berries are round and dark blue. Shavkapito tends toward a bud-burst in the last third of April and ripens in the second third of September (mid-season). It has average…

Chkhaveri

A western Georgian variety, Chkhaveri is mostly planted near the Black Sea coast in Adjara and especially in Guria, but also in Imereti. Chkhaveri originally was a “maghlari” wine, a vine trained to grow up trees. This pinkish-violet variety is sensitive to site and needs careful attention to give quality fruit. It grows particularly well…

Ojaleshi

One of Georgia’s oldest vine varieties, Ojaleshi, means “growing on a tree” in the Megrelian dialect of Georgian (ja=tree). It was the dominant variety in the mountainous district of Samegrelo in north-western Georgia, it was trained as a maghlari vine up persimmon or alder trees. Ojaleshi was widely cultivated in this manner throughout Guria’s central…

Aleksandrouli

The indigenous “vine of Alexander,” Aleksandrouli has been nurtured for a long time in the mountainous hillsides of Racha-Lechkhumi in western Georgia. Long thought to be a completely distinct variety to Mujuretuli, they are now known to be separate varieties with a common ancestor. The most notable plantings of Aleksandrouli are in the Ambrolauri, Oni…

Mujuretuli

Mujuretuli is, with Aleksandrouli, best known as forming the other half of the cult partnership that is Khvanchkara. Like its relative, it is largely cultivated along the Rioni River in western Georgia, in the Ambrolauri and Tsageri districts. Monovarietal plantings of Mujuretuli are rare; it is mostly interplanted with Aleksandrouli in limestone and rocky soils.…