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Thursday, October 18, 2018

Georgia to hold the first “Best Sommelier of Georgia” competition

18.10.2018 (Hvino News). On October 20 - 21, for the first time in Georgia the competition “Best Sommelier of Georgia – 2018” will be held within the frame of Georgian wine days “Gvinobistve”, organized by Georgian Sommelier Association and the National Wine Agency of the Ministry of Agriculture of Georgia.

Professional sommeliers, who are officially granted under international standards the status of Sommelier or Assistant Sommelier by Georgian Sommelier Association, will participate in the competition.

The competition will have a highly qualified jury, including foreign members, and the chairman will be the President of Georgian Sommelier Association, the founder of "Marani Khetsuriani" Mr. Shalva Khetsuriani.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

The Caucasus Wine University

by Samantha Guthrie

15.10.2018. This weekend, Caucasus University announced that it will expand, opening a new campus in the town of Gurjaani to be called ‘Caucasus Wine University,’ which plans to accept its first class of students in the 2020-2021 academic year.

The announcement was made during the 2018 Gurjaani Wine Festival. Member of Parliament, Gurjaani Majoritarian Davit Songhulashvili presented the project to the Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia, Mikheil Batiashvili, Head of the National Tourism Administration Giorgi Chogovadze, and other guests. Songhulashvili and representatives from Caucasus University, including founder and president Kakha Shengelia, presented a series of digitally rendered images of the new campus design, a modern, glassy, oversized take on a traditional Kakheti winery, resembling the Chateau Mere and Schuchmann Wines Chateau buildings.

The 2018 Gurjaani Wine Festival presented more than 100 varieties of traditional qvevri wines from both large companies and small family-owned cellars. The festival was held within the framework of Georgian Wine Week, supported by the Ministry of Environment Protection and Agriculture, the National Tourism Administration, and the National Wine Agency. Gurjaani’s festival was implemented by MP Songhulashvili and his staff. The festival was designed to promote the development of wine tourism and introduce wine culture and local traditions to international and domestic visitors.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Georgia to be featured as Guest of Honour at Swiss wine show

12.10.2018 (Hvino News) Expovina (Zurich Wine Exhibition) is one of the world's largest wine conventions. Georgia will take part in the most popular wine exhibition for the first time, and it will be presented there as a Guest of Honour.

Expovina is an annual wine fair that is held every autumn on boats of Lake Zurich. Uniquely, Expovina is organized on dozens of boats docked at Zurich’s Bürkliplatz harbour. It is scheduled for November 1-15.

Expovina brings together over 120 exhibitors with more that 4000 quality wines from from 25 nations.

"Winemaking has been practiced here for over 8000 years. It is considered one of the countries of origin of viticulture and is therefore called the "cradle of wine". Over 20 Georgian producers invite you to taste their wines known only to insiders. It is an exciting addition to the offers of our wine ships", - noted Bruno Sauter, Expovina's president.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Monday, October 8, 2018

Tbilisi to host new international wine and spirits competition "Georgia – Homeland of Wine"

08.10.2018 (Hvino News). International Eurasia Wine & Spirits Competition "Georgia – Homeland of Wine" (IEWSC 2018) is a new wine contest scheduled to take place on November 7-9 in Tbilisi.

IEWSC is organized by the Union of Georgian Oenologists under the official patronage of International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) and with technical support of Poliproject Exhibitions (Moldova). Hvino News is proud to be among the media partners of the IEWSC 2018.

According to official site, IEWSC's international jury is chaired by Murman Kuridze (Georgia), and consists of highly experienced professionals, including General Director of OIV Jean-Marie Aurand.

EAWSC 2018 welcomes submissions, while the deadline for receipt of samples is October 29, 2018. The contest is open to all categories and types of wines and spirits, as defined in the "International Code of Oenological Practices", which were produced in compliance with the legislation of the country of origin. Registration card can be filled online. Participation fee starts from 100 Eur (for one sample). The details of participation can be found at official site.

The winners will be awarded as follows: GRAND PRIX – over 96 points; GREAT GOLD MEDAL over 92 points; GOLD MEDAL 86 - 91,99 points; SILVER MEDAL 82 - 85,99 points; BRONZE MEDAL 80 - 81,99 points. According to the OIV regulation, the number of distinctions (medals) must not exceed 30 % of the total number of samples admitted to the contest. The winners of will have the right to order bottle stickers representing the awards.

The contest  will be held with strict adherence to OIV regulations: At least 2/3 of foreign experts will be present in commissions;  electronic processing of results;  high requirements for the venue and level of organization.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Friday, October 5, 2018

Unique wine varieties brought back to life on Meskhetian Terraces

by Ana Dumbadze

05.10.2018. On October 3, the winery Vardzia Terraces harvested restored historical varieties of rare grapes for the first time in 400 years. The event was held on the territory of the Khizabavra Meskhetian terraces, in the Samtskhe-Javakheti region.

Government officials, journalists and the drivers of the "Peaks of the Caucasus" car rally took part in the harvest. The visitors were hosted with famous Georgian wine and delicious dishes. They also had the opportunity to enjoy traditional folk songs. The project aims to promote wine and cultural tourism in Samtskhe-Javakheti.

Mamuka Khazaradze, the Chairman of TBC Bank, hosted the guests in Khizabavra village, Aspindza Municipality.

“Our company started the rehabilitation of 30 hectares of land [read more: Cultivation of ancient Meskhetian vine begins in Samtskhe-Javakheti - HN] . The first 12 hectares have already been restored and 27 historical varieties of grape have been planted in this area. These unique vine species have not been produced for the last four centuries. This is an important event, as Meskheti has always been the historical winemaking hub and I am delighted that today we are attending the first grape harvest together. Soon, we will have the first wines made from these ancient grape varieties,” Khazaradze told reporters.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Georgian Wine Days will be held on October 5-21

03.10.2018 (Hvino News). The Georgian Wine Days - “Gvinobistve-2018” - will be celebrated in Georgia on October 5-21. It is a series of events organized by National Wine Agency.

Events will be held in Tbilisi and several regions of Georgia. Wine days will be opened in Telavi on October 5. This part of the event will be called "Telavino 2018". It will be celebrated in the Old City Garden.

The Days will continue on October 12 in Marneuli (Kvemo Kartli), on the territory of the local Cultural Center. In the Marneuli part of the festival, wine tastings, a fair of handicrafts, clay processing workshops, a competition for the best winemaker and a spectacular wringing of grape juice are expected.

The Days will also be completed in Tbilisi, at the Winery No. 1 (Petriashvili Street No. 1), with the festival  “Small Marani on the Big Arena”. The event will be held on October 17. About 40 wineries (marani) will take part in the festival.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Levan Mekhuzla is appointed as new head of National Wine Agency

23.09.2018 (Hvino News). National Wine Agency (NWA) announced that its new chairman is Mr. Levan Mekhuzla, who was appointed on September 21. Since April Mr. Mekhuzla has been deputy chairman of the NWA.

Levan Mekhuzla was born in 1975. He graduated from Agrarian University in 1997. In 2010 he got MA in Business Management from Tbilisi Free University. Prior to joining NWA in 2007, Mr. Mekhuzla worked at Bagrationi 1882 (company specializing in sparkling wines production), and Georgian Wine and Spirits Company (GWS).

Previous chairman of NWA Giorgi Samanishvili left the office in spring.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Georgian wine exports to China declined due to excess supplies and high prices

22.09.2018. According to SakStat, in January-August 2018, wine in the amount of  $ 11.7 million was exported to China, while in the same period of 2017 – wine exports totaled $ 13.6 million. Obviously, Georgia sees a significant decline in exports. Zurab Ramazashvili, Director of Telavi Wine Cellar, says that exports to China have decreased, but too little time have passed to make far-reaching conclusions about the reasons.

"Our partners will give explanations in the coming months, but not earlier. There can be many reasons, including claims to quality, but it is more likely that the main problem is price," he  says.
Ramazashvili adds that despite this, the company will continue to operate on the Chinese market, and will try to eliminate the problems that caused the decline in exports as soon as possible.

Vaziani company’s sales  in  China have also decreased. According to its founder Irakli Iashvili, in comparison with 2017 the sales fell by 20-25%. "Our Chinese partners sell Georgian wine in an expensive segment that reduced the demand and the process raises concerns," he notes. In Iashvili’s words, it is difficult to specify  the exact reasons for what is happening, but most likely this is due to the stock growth and quality.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Chinese wine importers visit Georgia

by Thea Morrison

20.09.2018. Georgia’s National Wine Agency (NWA) reported that Debra Meiburg, chief of NWA's  contractor company Meiburg Wine Media, and a group of wine importers from China recently visited Georgia.

Meiburg reported that some of the members of the group are wine importers specialized in producing unique wine varieties and that past experience has shown that conducting such activities in Georgia is very successful.

“Georgian wine has moved from position 18 to position 9 on the China's wine market within the last four years. We are all very excited with the success of Georgian wine on the Asian wine market. Now it is our mission to promote Georgian wine not only among the wine importers but among the wine consumers as well. We will do our best to focus more on wine consumers' interests in Georgian wine," the NWA quoted Meiburg.

Within the wine tour, the guests were able to visit famous wine factories in Kartli and Kakheti: Chateau Mukhrani, Iago's Wine, Teleda/Orgo, Shumi Winery, Vaziani Winery, Kakhuri Gvinis Marani, GWS, Teliani Valley, Friends’ Cellar, Papari Valley, Badagoni, Pheasant's Tears, Vazisubani Estate and Lukasi Winery. They were also familiarized with the traditional qvevri wine-making process in Georgia.

A wine tasting was held in Tbilisi where over 100 varieties of wine of 27 different wine companies were presented.

The NWA says China is the third largest exporter of Georgian wine. Over  8 million bottles of Georgian wine were exported from Georgia to China within the last eight months.

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Monday, September 10, 2018

"Los Angeles Times" covers Georgian wine culture

John Henderson in Georgia
10.09.2018 (Hvino News). Los Angeles Times - a leading US newspaper - in a recent issue published an article focusing on Georgian wine, entitled "In Georgia, wine is a centuries-old tradition that has brought new appeal to the republic".

The article is authored by John Henderson, who visited Tbilisi and Telavi. He spent two weeks this summer in Georgia, at the eastern end of the Black Sea, and toured some of the 20 wineries around the capital of the Kakheti region.

He starts his text as follows: "It was known as the “Tuscany of the Soviet Union”... Everyone in the Soviet Union knew it, thanks to wine, the greatest gift the Republic of Georgia gave mankind. Wine was being produced south of Tbilisi, Georgia’s capital, as early as 8,000 years ago... Throughout its history and its oppression, Georgia always had wine to fall back on. It became a form of expression when Georgians had none. And it was the main source of wine for Mother Russia, its neighbor. And since independence in 1991 and a Russian embargo in 1998, improved production and marketing have made Georgian wines among the trendiest in the world."

Friday, September 7, 2018

Georgian wines win 14 medals at MUNDUS VINI 2018 Summer Tasting

07.09.2018 (Hvino News). 14 Georgian wines have won top awards at prestigious competition Mundus Vini 2018 Summer Tasting, organized by German wine magazine publisher "Meininger Verlag". The competition is held twice a year: In summer and before the ProWein exhibition.

The summer awards were announced recently. Georgian wines won 8 gold and 6 silver medals. List of winners follows:

Gold:

2016 Marani Kondoli Vineyards Saperavi, JSC Telavi Wine Cellar (Best of Show Georgia)
2015 Satrapezo Saperavi, JSC Telavi Wine Cellar
2012 Marani Kondoli Vineyards Saperavi, JSC Telavi Wine Cellar
2016 Barbale Chinuri, Union Wine Invest
2015 Mukuzani, LTD Koncho & Co
2016 Saperavi Premium, LTD Koncho & Co
2017 Iberiuli Kisi, Wine Company Shumi
2014 Saperavi Family Reserve, Lukasi

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

8 Georgian wines and chacha win top awards at China's CWSA contest

28.08.2018 (Hvino News). Eight Georgian wines and one chacha were awarded with double gold awards at China Wine & Spirits Awards (CWSA) 2018. Besides the top  "double gold" wards, Georgian wines won 23 gold medals, 5 silver and 9 bronze awards. This is a huge progress compared to last years' performance at CWSA.

The full list of Georgian prize-winners follows:

Double Gold:

  • Alaverdi Tradition red 2016, Badagoni 
  • Alaverdi Tradition white 2016, Badagoni 
  • Chacha Original, Badagoni 
  • Tamada Qvevri Red 2014, GWS 
  • Mukuzani 2014, Kakhuri Gvinis Marani 
  • Kartuli Vazi Saperavi Budeshuri 2016, Tiflis Wine Cellar 
  • Kartuli Vazi Kindzmarauli 2017, Tiflis Wine Cellar 
  • Réserve Royale 2014, JSC Château Mukhrani 
  • Nelkarisi Saperavi 2014, JSC Friends' Cellar 

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Georgia Capital buys rest of winemaker Kindzmarauli Marani

22.08.2018 (Hvino News) Georgia Capital (BGEO Group) announced the buyout of the remaining 39.5% equity stake in Kindzmarauli Marani on Wednesday.

The London-listed firm said that, following its acquisition in April, it held a 60.5% indirect interest in Kindzmarauli through a locally-established special-purpose vehicle.

"Georgia Capital expects that the purchase of the minority stake will strengthen its existing beverage business with an increased presence in the growing domestic and international markets for Georgian wine," the board said.

In May 2018, BGEO Group announced that Georgia Capital (its investment arm) has acquired a 60% indirect controlling interest in Kindzmarauli Marani LLC for $7.25 million. Read more: Georgia Capital acquires control over Kindzmarauli Marani.

BGEO Group is a UK-incorporated holding company of a Georgia-focused investment platform. BGEO already has stakes in another leading wine company Teliani Valley, and in many other industry sectors including  Aldagi (insurance sector), m2 (real estate), Bank of Georgia.  

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Georgian wine ranked 5th most expensive in the world

22.08.2018 (Hvino News). American Association of Wine Economists (AAWE) in its Twitter recently published a table entitled "Unit Value of Wine Exports", based on United Nations Comtrade database. According to the table, Georgia ranked 5th in the world by wine export price - at $3.49 per liter in 2014-2016.

The world's costliest wine comes from France at $6.59 per liter.

In the average, Georgian export wine is more expensive than Italian ($3.06) or Spanish ($1.32).

Wine industry professionals have contrasting opinions if high export price is good or bad for Georgian wine export.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Hailstorm damaged vineyards and other farmlands in Georgia's Kakheti region

19.08.2018 (Hvino News). A heavy hailstorm hit Kakheti's capital Telavi and Akhmeta municipality, which is in the heartland of Georgia's main winemaking region.  Heavy rain and hail damaged vineyards and other  farmlands.

"Everything that could only be destroyed was destroyed. In total during this year, the hails have destroyed approximately 200 hectares of agricultural land. The main problem is that the vineyards are not insured, so the owners can not get compensation," - said David Mamukelashvili, representative of the municipality in the village of Matani.

The mudflows flooded several streets of the city on Telavi and hampered the traffic movement. The first floors of the houses were also flooded.

Emergency Management Service received 51 notices from Telavi and Akhmeta districts. No one was injured.

© Hvino News


The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Thursday, August 9, 2018

"Georgian Wine Asian Tour" started in Singapore and South Korea

09.08.2018  (Hvino News). "Was so impressed by the high interest in Georgian wines by the top sommeliers in Singapore!" - commented Debra Meiburg MW, who leads "Georgian Wine Asian Tour 2018" - a series of Georgian wine promotion events in South East Asia.

The Tour started in Singapore and South Korea. It will continue in China (Shanghai, Macao, Xiamen, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hong-Kong).

Organized by Meiburg Wine Media, the Georgian wine tasting events within "Asian Tour 2018"  are attended by wine importers, representatives of media, restaurants and hotel chains. About 10 Georgian wineries are represented.

South-East Asian countries are an important market for Georgian wine. During the first seven months of 2018, export to South Korea reached 40,980 bottles (growth 1,305 percent), as for Singapore – 40,800 bottles (growth 7,600 percent).

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Official: Georgia earns $107 million by exporting wine in January-July

08.08.2018 (Hvino News). According to official state resource, Georgia exported 45.4 million bottles of wine to 50 countries in January-July of 2018, and earned about $107.8 million from the export. The revenue increased by 28 percent, while the volume of exports rose by 19 percent.

The top five importing countries in January-July 2018 are:

Russia – 28,564,609 bottles
Ukraine – 5,040,319 bottles
China – 3,514,066 bottles
Kazakhstan – 1,996,860 bottles
Poland – 1,886,618 bottles

Georgia exported 9.9 million bottles of Georgian brandy (+20 percent) and 219,500 bottles of chacha (+114 percent) abroad in January-July 2018.

In total, Georgia has gained  $173 million from sales of alcoholic beverages abroad in January-July 2018, including wine, brandy, chacha and others.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Saturday, August 4, 2018

"Financial Times" on a new era for Georgian wine

'The country’s traditional wine specialities are culturally fascinating and globally unique'

by Andrew Jefford

04.08.2018. On New Year’s Day this year, Georgia and China implemented a free-trade agreement. In Beijing and Tbilisi, glasses were doubtless raised in celebration — as they should have been for a deal that linked the world’s two oldest alcoholic-beverage cultures.

Organic residues found in pottery from the Chinese Neolithic village of Jiahu in Henan province furnish the earliest attested traces of consumption of alcohol by our species: the villagers, between 9,000 and 7,700 years ago, seem to have drunk a mixture of wine fermented from either grapes or hawthorn fruits mixed with rice beer and mead. Archaeologists working in Georgia, meanwhile, revealed in November 2017 that the world’s oldest pure grape-wine residues had been found in two Neolithic villages, dating back about 8,000 years. China can claim to have fermented the world’s oldest drink, and modern Georgia the world’s oldest wine.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Georgian government to stop vintage subsidies, to reform wine sector

28.07.2018 (Hvino News). This year Georgian government will suspend state subsidization of vintage. Georgian minister of Environment Protection and Agriculture Levan Davitashvili said that the government will show new mechanisms for the 2018 vintage Government started subsidizing grapes in 2013.

Mr. Davitashvili discussed organizational issues of vintage 2018 and the wine sector reform at the meeting with the representatives of wine industry at a recent meeting with representatives of wine sector.

According to the minister, the last year’s approach, when the state was no longer involved in determining the price of grape prices, resulted in the outcome and the market itself determined the prices, which in turn positively reflected in the sustainability of the sector development. Vintage 2018 will be carried out without subsidizing, but the state will be involved in the vintage organizing, accounting and tracing process, according to the minister.

Levan Davitashvili also made an official presentation of the Wine Sector Reform and Management System. According to the minister, the aim of the reform is more sustainable and result-oriented  development of  the sector.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Major winemaking companies facing quality problems

27.07.2018. Several days ago businessman Mamuka Khazaradze made comments about Georgian wine quality issues  and stressed that Georgian wines should not be sold for the same price as Borjomi. In his interview for the Anaklia magazine, he explains that Georgian wines should regain their obvious quality.

«We should restore the quality of Georgian wines. It is excellent that a lot of wine cellars have activated efforts, but we still cannot say: Georgian wine is a high-quality product. We cannot provide valuable and proper positioning of Georgian wines. It is incorrect that Georgian wines cost 2 USD. According to my information, about 70 million bottles were sold in 2017 and total value made up about 120 million USD. It is inadmissible when the country with 8000-year history of winemaking sells wines at the price of Borjomi. Higher prices on Georgian wines  will enliven Georgian peasants. This is a very important message for me – we should make accents on quality and uniqueness. When we invite top-class wine experts to the country and make investments in this infrastructure, Georgia will become a unique country, where we will taste such wines that cannot be met elsewhere in the world», Khazaradze noted.

The Caucasus Business Week (CBW) has inquired how Georgian winemakers appraise the businessman’s considerations and whether quality problem is a real challenge in the Georgian winemaking.

«Quality problem is most evident in major winemaking companies», Giorgi Aladashvili, director of Ruispiri Biodynamic Vineyard company noted in response to the statement by Mamuka Khazaradze.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Rare Megrelian vine varieties restored

26.07.2018. Rare Megrelian vine varieties Chvitiluri and Koloshi have been restored, Misha Tsirdava, founder of Obene family wine cellar, told BM.ge. Several other Megrelian vine varieties will be also restored, namely, Kachichi, Chechipeshi, Cheqobalio and Makhvatina, he added.

For the purposing of finding the mentioned vines, Tsirdava visited all corners of Samegrelo Region and managed to restore two vine varieties Chvitiluri and Koloshi for two years. He planted these varieties on the wine cellar territory of about 1 hectare. At the same time, he has also made wine from the mentioned varieties in small volumes and international experts highly approved the mentioned wines.

“I have read a lot of books about ancient vine varieties. When Georgian researchers wrote about Megrelian winemaking, they stressed two varieties, Chvitiluri and Koloshi, which were spread in while Samegrelo , but especially high-quality grapes used to grow in Mukhuri, Jgali, Salkhino, Tsalenjikha. Chvitiluri is a white grape varsity, Koloshi – red grape variety. Both varieties give top-quality dry wines.

Russia’s Georgian drinking problem

Is Russia's warning on Georgian wine about consumer protection, or geopolitics?

by Giorgi Lomsadze

26.07.2018. Russia, the world’s biggest drinker of Georgian wine, has threatened to tighten control on alcohol imports from Georgia in a step many take as a political shot across the bow.

About 16,000 liters of Georgian alcohol were denied entry to Russia during the first half of 2018, Russia’s federal consumer protection agency, Rospotrebnadzor, announced in a July 19 statement. The shipments did not meet “the standards defined by technical regulations and Russian law for consumer protection,” the agency declared (see details here).

Russia, to be sure, still tossed back 24 million bottles of Georgian wine over that period, representing a 24 percent spike from the year before, according to Georgian export statistics. Last year, Russia gulped down almost 48 million bottles of Georgian wine, 62 percent of all wine exports from Georgia.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Russia to strengthen quality control of imported Georgian wine

20.07.2018 (Hvino News). Russia's Federal Service for the Oversight of Consumer Protection and Welfare "Rospotrebnadzor" in the first half of the year did not allow 16 thousand liters of alcohol from Georgia.

According to official press release, the alcohol products "did not comply with technical regulations to import into Russia, and the agency decided to strengthen control over imported alcohol products from Georgia".

"In the first half of 2018, lots of alcohol products were found that did not meet the mandatory requirements established by technical regulations and Russian legislation in the field of consumer protection.All lots of products that did not meet mandatory requirements totaling more than 16 thousand liters were not admitted to the territory of Russia ", the release reads.

According to Rospotrebnadzor, the analysis of the quality and safety of the products indicates "a violation of production technology and an inadequate level of control over the products produced, both from the side of manufacturers and from the side of authorized Georgian governmental bodies".

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Monday, July 16, 2018

MadamWine: EU4Business helps all-women Georgian winery expand

16.07.2018. With funding from the European Union and its EU4Business initiative, the EBRD’s Advice for Small Businesses programme has helped an all-women Georgian wine producer to grow its presence online and increase visibility to attract new clients and explore new export markets. As a result, the company has boosted its outreach and found clients both on domestic and foreign markets.

As one of the oldest wine-making countries in the world, it is little wonder that Georgia is home to so many wine producing companies. But MadamWine is a unique winery, where the founder, manager, staff, and wine-maker are all women.

Although the company targets women customers with specific types of wine, men also favour the brand’s distinct taste. Being a small wine producing company, MadamWine does not have its own production facility.

MadamWine had been represented at various local and international exhibitions, with samples sent to South Korea, Japan, and Hong Kong. But in order to promote the brand further and attract the attention of international investors, the management of MadamWine was keen to strengthen its online presence.

Friday, July 13, 2018

"The Drinks Business": Georgia wine exports in H1 driven by Russian demand

by Natalie Wang

13.07.2018. Georgian wine exports in the first half of the year have recorded double-digit growth in both volume and value, driven by bullish demand from Russia, and new markets in countries such as Japan.

The ancient winemaking country’s exports from January to June rose by 21% year-on-year to 38.2 million bottles, while its value jumped 28% to US$90.3 million, according to figures released by its official wine trade organisation, National Wine Agency.

Russia still remains the country’s biggest export market with more than 24 million bottles of Georgian wines shipped during the period, followed by Ukraine (4.19 million bottles), China (2.9 million bottles), Kazakhstan (1.65 million bottles) and Poland (1.57 million bottles).

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Georgian wine export to Japan to be simplified

12.07.2018 (Hvino News) According to the National Wine Agency (NWA), four Georgian testing laboratories were granted official certification in Japan. For Georgian winemakers this will simplify wine export in Japan.

Previously, additional requirements were applied to the wine exported from Georgia to Japan, adding costs. To resolve the problems, Georgia suggested a list of Georgian laboratories for certification in Japan. Japanese Embassy helped by arranging the representatives from their Health, Labour and Welfare Ministries to discuss with the Georgian side. In result, the Japanese side certified the following laboratories: "Wine Laboratory" Ltd, Ltd "Norm", LLC "MultiTest" and LLC "Expertise +".

“Japan is one of the strategic export markets for Georgian wine. 130 thousand bottles of wine have been exported there over the past 6 months, which is 200% higher than the same period last year," - the National Wine Agency noted.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Saperavi Khashmi is the newest protected Georgian wine appellation name

12.07.2018 (Hvino News) National Wine Agency (NWA) reported that a new variety was added to the list of protected Georgian appellation wines. The new protected appellation is Saperavi Khashmi. According to the press release, NWA addressed the National Intellectual Property Center "Sakpatenti" for registration of Saperavi Khashmi last year, which was preceded by the  joint work of the Agency and National Agricultural Research Center to prepare specifications required for registration.

Saperavi Khashmi is red dry wine from Khashmi microzone, located in Sagarejo municipality. "According to historical sources, the cultivation of the vineyard in the Khashmi area is associated with the name of Queen Tamar, who ordered Davit Gareji monks to cultivate the vineyard  here", - reads the NWA's release.

Previously there were 18 Georgian appellation wines registered in Georgia: Khvanchkara, Mukuzani, Tsinandali, Akhasheni, Gurjaani, Kindzmarauli, Manavi, Kakheti, Napareuli, Teliani, Ateni, Sviri, Vazisubani, Kardenakhi, Tibaani, Tvishi, Kvareli and Kotekhi.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Georgia to produce qvevri on 3D printers (with video)

08.07.2018 (Hvino News). QvevriXYZ is a company, which announced a 3D printer technology to revolutionize the ancient Georgian method of production of the qvevri. 

This uniquely Georgian amphora-like vessel used in winemaking is traditionally produced of clay according to tradition which has  not changed during several thousand years. Modern technology, however, has reached this millenia-old craftsmanship.

QvevriXYZ says that "with elements of traditional qvevri making process and modern technologies, we improved its structure and quality, yet kept its unique characteristics".



Traditionally, it takes months to make a qvevri. For a 3D printer, it takes several hours, plus normal pottery burning/drying process.

Theere are four "founding fathers" behind QvevriXYZ: David Mizandari, Nika Gujejiani, Giorgi Mamasakhlisi, who are from Georgia, and a Dutch Olivier van Herpt. Hvino News contacted Nika Gujejiani, who kindly answered our questions.

Hvino News: What substance do you use for production?

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

"Wine Enthusiast" explained why readers should pay attention to Georgian wine

03.07.2018 (Hvino News). "Why You Should Be Paying Attention to Georgian Wine" is the title of yesterday's article in the leading American magazine Wine Enthusiast. 

This is how the author Kelly Magyarics starts her explanation: "About the size of West Virginia, Georgia is home to more than 500 grape varieties". "In 2017, Georgian wine imports to the United States grew 54% from the year before, translating to 458,000 bottles versus 294,000 in 2016. While that still puts them way behind powerhouse countries like Spain, Italy and France, the demand for and availability for Georgian wine is stronger than ever."

"Georgia made natural and organic wines long before they became buzzwords... Natural wine producers have also embraced qvevri, the egg-shaped clay vessels buried underground that UNESCO designated a signature part of Georgia’s winemaking heritage. Their porous nature allows for natural temperature shifts and aeration, and their lack of corners promotes wine’s contact kinetic movement allowing constant natural less stirring and more uniform oxygen contact. Qvevri are indispensable for amber wines."

Full text can be found here. Kelly Magyarics is a wine and spirits writer, and wine educator in Washington, D.C.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Will there be wine on Mars? Georgia prepares its grapes for an interplanetary mission

by Giorgi Lomsadze

27.06.2018. Next time Matt Damon gets marooned on Mars, he may be whiling away his days sipping Saperavi instead of farming potatoes as he did so laboriously in the 2015 blockbuster, The Martian. Georgia, an ancient wine-making redoubt, is putting its best space science and viticulture minds together to develop grapes fit for growing on Mars.

With its rocks and deserts, the Red Planet may not offer the best terroir for growing grapes, but with a 8,000-year record of cultivating grapes on the Planet Earth, Georgia is still eager to give it a whirl. After all, NASA and International Potato Center have successfully experimented with growing potatoes in Mars-like conditions, so why not take Martian farming to the next, more sybaritic stage?

The idea was born out of a recent call for proposals from NASA, the United States space agency, for facilitating a sustained human presence on Mars. “This could include shelter, food, water, breathable air, communication, exercise, social interaction and medicine, but participants are encouraged to consider innovative and creative ideas beyond these examples,” NASA wrote in a press release announcing the initiative in May.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Georgian wine tastings held in UK

26.06.2018 (Hvino News) ‘Georgian Wine Roadshow’ was a series of Georgian wine tasting events organized in Great Britain in June. The tastings featuring 30 Georgian wines were held in Glasgow and Manchester. According to Georgian Embassy in the UK, the guests also had the opportunity to taste some Georgian cuisine delicacies, listen to Georgian folk music and watch a Scottish folk  group’s performance.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Schuchmann Wines launched grape-based cosmetic products

26.06.2018 (Hvino News) Schuchmann Wines Georgia launched a grapes-based "wine cosmetics" line,  including grape seed oil and scrub made from Saperavi grapes seed.

"The oil has been obtained by the method of the first cold pressing of Saperavi grape seeds, growing at Schuchmann vineyards, is very rich in antioxidants, which reduce the ageing process. The grape seeds contain bioflavonoids that regulate the secretion of fatty glands, promote hair growth, collagen synthesis and impede ageing processes. It is perfect for skin care" - reads the company's release.

Products are available only at the company’s hotel Schuchmann Wines Chateau & SPA in the village Kisiskhevi (Kakheti region). "We consider selling it somewhere else. The company has been offering wine spa procedures for guests for two years, and the idea of ​​creating these products was born here. We wanted to offer guests a novelty. The product contains useful substances that are a unique way for skin and body skin care, “ - said company's director Nutsa Abramishvili.


The grape seed oil comes in a 50 ml bottle and costs 45 GEL, while the price of 200 g of scrub is 25 GEL. The company organized a production line for cosmetic products at the wine factory, and the staff was trained in Germany.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Sunday, June 24, 2018

GWS planted "Garden of Earthly Delights" for company's guests in Telavi

24.06.2018 (Hvino News). "The Garden of Delights" is the name of one of the world's most mysterious masterpieces - the 1515's triptych by Dutch genius artist Hieronymus Bosch (see a small fragment in the corner).

The same name was also chosen by Georgian Wine and Spirits (GWS) company for a festive outdoor party which was held yesterday on the company's premises just outside Telavi, in the region of Kakheti.

At the stylish yet eclectic party in the heartland of Georgia's wine-making, baroque musicians, jazz band, and DJs took turns to entertain the international guests of the creatively decorated GWS winery estate.

True to the concept of earthly delights celebration, the organizers offered abundant food and refined wine, served on the picturesque green lawns.

GWS offered a new line of wines "Colors of Georgia" consisting of an elegant white Vardisubani, and two rich, full-bodied red wines - Artana and Akura. Only 6,000 bottles of of each are produced, all from the 2014 vintage. These limited edition line became the latest addition to company's broad range of  products under brands Tamada, Old Tbilisi, Vismino and others.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Film director turned winemaker: Giga Agladze's wines presented at "Reserve"

22.06.2018 (Hvino News). What's in common between Georgia, the French Revolution, and award-winning American film director David Lynch? George (Giga) Agladze, the maker of AG Alco wines, explained the rich cultural background backing his brand at a presentation held yesterday at Reserve, Tbilisi's trend-setting wine tasting shop.

George Agladze is a professional movie director who turned winemaker to continue his family's ancient wine-making tradition which dates back to 1798. His ancestor - also George Agladze, a soldier during the War of the Second Coalition against the revolutionary France - was captured, freed, and even managed to organize wine-making according to Georgian qvevri technology in France in the 1800-s.

Nowadays, this fantastic story is an inspiration behind the AG Alco wines. And what about David Lynch, the legendary director of Twin Peaks? George Agladze is also president of David Lynch Foundation Caucasus, and David is fond of the George's wines. "Our wine technology is a mixture of Georgian and European traditions", - commented Mr. Agladze.

The elegant presentation at Reserve (3, 9 Aprili Street) featured 4 wines under Agladze's brand, and was attended by the industry representatives, diplomats, and the mass media. According to Reserve's owner David Tatulashvili, the wine presentations  of selected Georgian and foreign brands at his wine-tasting shop will become regular.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Tbilisi hosts General Assembly of "Association of Sommeliers Worldwide"

19.06.2018 (Hvino News). On June 18-22 Tbilisi is hosting the annual General Assembly of "Association of Sommeliers Worldwide" (Association de la Sommellerie Internationale, ASI).

The Georgian Sommelier Association joined the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale in 2014, and this year received the right for Georgia to host the General Assembly.

ASI is a non-profit organization  founded in Reims (France) in 1969. It unites national wine associations of 62 countries of the world.

© Hvino News


The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Friday, June 15, 2018

Winery Khareba opened office in Shanghai

15.06.2018. The official representative office of Winery Khareba was opened in Shanghai, China.

New office opening ceremony was attended by local partners and partners from different countries. Event was also attended by Andro Aslanishvili, deputy chairman of National Wine Agency of Georgia.

General director of the company Giorgi Ezugbaia and production director Vladimer Kublashvili introduced the company and its future plans to the guests.

"Opening of the official representation on Chinese market is a very important step made by the company that is great opportunity for the popularization of Georgian wine abroad,” - the company said.

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Sarajishvili dedicated brandy to 100 years anniversary of independence of Georgia

13.06.2018 (Hvino News). The announcement of the first democratic state of Georgia is a special and important date for all Georgians.  “Sarajishvili” dedicated a unique drink with symbolic name “Independence” to this very important date.

The premium class brandy, which is kept in the oak barrels, is distinguished with rich, refined, elegant aroma. Brightly shining, amber-coloured, dark golden liquid is enriched with fruit, oak timber, vanilla and chocolate tones. Bottle design is also unique, symbolizing the old inkwell.

The brandy, which was dedicated to the 100 years anniversary of independence of Georgia, will become available in September. The number of bottles will be symbolically only 1918. Due to the limited number, the customers can preorder the bottle.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Tbilisi hosts WinExpo Georgia 2018 wine and spirit fair

12.06.2018 (Hvino News). The WinExpo Georgia is only trade exhibition in South Caucasus region, presenting full range of wine industry products and services. The 11th WinExpo is a 3-day event being held on 14-16 June, organized by ExpoGeorgia and supported by Ministry of Agriculture of Georgia.

The10th International Wine Award is being held on June 11-12 in the framework of WinExpo 2018. Ssubmitted wine samples wines are evaluated by the international jury, consisting of by renowned experts and journalists specializing in wine production. The jury is chaired by Tim Atkin, Master of Wine, from UK.

Each year, the event attracts about a  hundred companies from around the world, and is visited by no less than 4,000 people. According to the organizers, WinExpo has proved efficiency both on the regional and international markets. In 2017, the exhibition gathered 97 companies that produce more than 170 varieties of wine and alcoholic beverages. 11 countries took part in the exhibition: Georgia, Russia, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Turkey and Ukraine.

Wine and cheese tastings, seminars, conferences, master classes, film demonstrations, and other thematic events are also planned at WinExpo 2018.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Friday, June 8, 2018

Georgian wine events across USA in June

08.06.2018 (Hvino News) A series of Georgian wines tasting events and seminars across USA are planned for the month of June. Lisa Granik, Master of Wine, organized a special “Inside the Qvevri” seminar on June 4th in New York.

About 30 Georgian wine producers were represented at the tasting. The goal of the seminar was "to explain the intricacies of making wine in qvevri... This packed-to-capacity event was followed by the annual Georgian wine tasting," - said Ms. Granik.

On Sunday, June 10th,  Lisa Granik MW will be hosting a trade dinner for Georgian wine in San Francisco, with a repeat of the seminar and tasting the next day, on June 11. Georgian wine events will follow on  June 12 in Portland (Oregon),  and on June 13 in Houston (Texas)

"Lots going on!  Plenty of interest", - concluded Ms Granik in  a comment for Hvino News.

© Hvino News

The First Saperavi World Prize: RESULTS

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Official: Georgian wine export up 27 percent as of May 2018

07.06.2018. Georgia exported 31.5 million bottles of wine to 46 countries in the first five months of 2018, according to the Georgian National Wine Agency.

In January-May of 2018 Georgia generated about $75.3 million from the sale of wine abroad.

Revenue increased by 36 percent from January-May 2017, while the volume of exports increased by 27 percent, said the Georgian National Wine Agency.

Export growth was notable in the following countries:

Japan – 186 percent increase (97,668 bottles)
Great Britain – 109 percent increase (45,210 bottles)
The Czech Republic– 87 percent (24,408 bottles)
South Korea – 76 percent increase (31,380 bottles)
Germany –51 percent increase (252,982 bottles)

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Radisson Collection welcomes Georgia’s historic Tsinandali Estate

05.06.2018.  Radisson Hotel Group is excited to announce the signing of the first Radisson Collection hotel in Eastern Europe and Russia. The Tsinandali Estate, a Radisson Collection Hotel will open its doors in October 2018 in the iconic wine region of Kakheti, Georgia.

True to Radisson Collection’s pioneering ethos, the Tsinandali Estate will establish a new benchmark of quality in the country. A model of locally-inspired, contemporary design, the property will set out to shine a light on Tsinandali’s rich history and build the region’s profile as an emerging travel hotspot.

A truly unique property, the hotel is set amidst the Tsinandali Estate’s own remarkable vineyards, amongst the finest in a region renowned for its diverse selection of wines. The hotel grounds also neighbor an historic 18-hectare park, only a short distance from the Tsinandali Palace Museum of Prince Alexander Chavchavadze – a memorial to the founder of Georgian Romanticism and an important cultural attraction in its own right.

Elie Younes, Executive Vice President & Chief Development Officer of Radisson Hotel Group said: “The Tsinandali Estate, a Radisson Collection hotel is welcome addition to our expanding portfolio in Georgia; offering its guests a unique authentic experience and our owners the opportunity to develop an individualized property that benefits from a global network.”

Saturday, June 2, 2018

"National Geographic Traveler": Georgian wine is an entirely different experience

02.06.2018. (Hvino News). "Sipping a deep, orange-coloured Georgian wine is an entirely different experience to drinking a glass of sauvignon blanc — and not just if you happen to be sitting overlooking the mountain-backed vines of the country’s Kakheti wine region, - reads the new article in National Geographic Traveler. This is the starting sentence of article "Little-known wine producers around the world" by Fiona Beckekt starts published yesterday."

"Just as our taste in food is shifting, so our interest in wine is starting to diversify. French, Italian and Spanish wines may still be the best-sellers, but straying off the beaten track can reveal new flavours and unusual grape varieties". Starting with Georgian wines, the author explores also wines from Hungary, Slovenia, and other countries. In particular, Fiona Beckett mentions Orgo Saperavi 2015, which is the number one wine in her list of "Five of the best": "Traditionally made and inky in colour, this is a lively, juicy red with beguiling bitter cherry flavours. Ideal with char-grilled lamb and a pomegranate salad. £19"

"Georgia has attracted a lot of media interest over the past couple of years — both as a travel destination and for the output of its vineyards and kitchens (it was recently featured both by Channel 5’s The Wine Show and The Food Programme, on BBC Radio 4). It claims to be the oldest wine-producing country in the world, with a tradition dating back over 8,000 years, and still retains classic methods of ageing wine in qvevri (clay amphorae) buried in the ground", - reads the fresh National Geographic Traveler article.

Friday, June 1, 2018

41 Georgian wines received awards of International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) 2018

31.05.2018 (Hvino News). The International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) is one of the oldest and international wine competitions in the world. Established in London in 1969, it sets the highest standard of quality and declares its main goal to support and promote the best wines of the planet and the skill of winemakers.

This year eight Georgian companies won 41 IWSC awards: 11 silver and 30 bronze medals: Badagoni, Château Mukhrani, GWS Winery, Tbilvino, Telavi Wine Cellar, Teliani Valley, Schuchmann Wines, Vaziani Winery. In 2017 Georgia got 47 awards at IWSC.

Full list of awarded wines:

Silver: