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Monday, September 12, 2016

Georgian wine class in Washington area

12.09.2016 (Hvino News). On September 16 at Total Wine  Map  in Alexandria (Virginia, USA) a Georgian wine class will be held at 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm. Entrance fee is $5.

"Join us for a fun evening of free food and wine from Georgia, the country not the state. We will be taking over the tasting room for a sit down in depth wine class on Georgian wines, the history, the varietals and the taste," - the organizers say.

5 Georgian wines will be tasted including varietals such as Rkatsiteli and Saperavi made in both modern and qvevri style from producers such as Teliani Valley, Schuchmann Wines, and Vinoterra.

"Invite a friend and don’t miss this chance to discover Georgian wine!"

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Sunday, September 11, 2016

Official stats for August: Georgia exports 42% more wine

11.09.2016 (Hvino News). According to Georgia's National Wine Agency (NWA), over 28 million bottles of wine were exported to 46 countries last month, bringing $64.8 million back into the economy.

In August 2016 Georgia exported 42 percent more wine year-on-year (y/y), and generated 16 percent more revenue by selling 28,156,547 bottles of wine abroad.

The top five countries that imported the most Georgian wine in August 2016 were:

Russia – 14,664,610 bottles
China – 3,368,361 bottles
Ukraine – 3,042,192 bottles
Kazakhstan – 2,287, 826 bottles
Poland – 1,367,960 bottles

Year-on-year exports of Georgian wine increased to:

Friday, September 9, 2016

WTO's Taleb Rifai: "Georgia is a must-see place for every winemaker”

09.09.2016 (Hvino News). "I am glad to see how effectively the Government of Georgia has been working to turn Georgia into a country that offers diverse tourism opportunities,” said Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), yesterday at the first session of the first Global Conference on Wine Tourism, organised by the UNWTO  and Georgia's National Tourism Administration (GNTA).

Over 250 guests from 42 countries took part in the conference, which was held in Georgia on September 7-9.

Dr. Rifai said Georgians were the champions and leaders in wine tourism and a "must-see place for every winemaker”. "This would be a very educational visit as everyone will be able to learn about wine history and at the same time experience great pleasure and joy of life by drinking Georgian wine,” he added.

"When we are talking about wine we should realise it was born 8,000 years ago in this very place. Every time you hold a bottle of wine, think about the whole process – about the vineyards, grapes and the way wine gets from the vineyards to your table,” Dr. Rifai said.

Georgia’s economy minister Dimitry Kumsishvili also welcomed the conference participants and said these types of conferences helped raise awareness of Georgia. "Tourism plays an important part in Georgia’s economy. In 2015 Georgia hit a record as it hosted about six million international visitors. This record will is set to be broken again for sure,” Kumsishvili said.

The minister also shared the popular legend, according to which the land given by the God to Georgians was the one he planned to keep for his mother. "That's why we call Georgia Motherland", - added Mr. Kumsishvili.

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Thursday, September 8, 2016

UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism inaugurated in Tbilisi

08.09.2016 (Hvino News). The 1st UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism was opened on September 7th in Tbilisi. The conference is organized by World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in collaboration with the Georgian National Tourism Administration.

The conference was opened by Georgia's Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili and Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of UNWTO, who addressed conference participants during dinner reception in Tbilisi.

"This is the biggest event in our country’s life in terms of cementing Georgia’s image as the world’s cradle of wine”, said Mr. Kvirikashvili.

The conference guests were entertained with Georgian traditional dancing and singing. Mr. Rifai made a toast for prosperity of Georgia and development of wine tourism industry in the country.

The first conference session will be held in Kakheti, where the guests will also visit the Alaverdi Monastery, famous for its wine, and Winery Khareba's "Wine Tunnel".

The working sessions will be opened by welcoming remarks by Georgia's minister of economy Dimitry Kumsishvili and UNWTO's Taleb Rifai.

The sessions will continue in Chateau Mukhrani on September 9.

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Wednesday, September 7, 2016

UNWTO Secretary-General to attend the First International Conference on Wine Tourism in Georgia

07.09.2016. The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in collaboration with the Georgian National Tourism Administration will present the 1st UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism to be held in the Kakheti wine region of Georgia from 7-9 September.

The Conference will have a unique and dynamic format in which the sessions will take place in different wineries.

Expert speakers will provide snapshot presentations to lead the debates which will ensue at each of the tables.

Participants will be requested to actively participate in the interactive debates with the expert speakers which will be rotating among the tables. The conclusions of the Conference will be a compilation of all the information debated during each meeting.

“Wine tourism represents a growing segment with immense opportunities to diversify demand. In the case of Georgia, this potential is well-known and we are very pleased to be holding the first UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism in the country,” said Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of UNWTO.

[Hvino News will provide coverage of UNWTO Global Conference. Hvino.com's director is attending the Conference as participant - HN]


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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

UN to host first conference on wine tourism in Georgia

06.09.2016. For the first edition of a UN-organized conference on wine tourism, leaders will gather in the cradle of winemaking next week to discuss the burgeoning industry and its importance in local heritage.

It's a strategic and significant decision to hold the first edition of the UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism in the South Caucasus country of Georgia instead of bigger and more popular wine tourism destinations like France, Italy, Spain or Australia.

By choosing Georgia, organizers are returning to what some experts have described as the birthplace of winemaking.

Evidence of winemaking traditions have been traced back 8,000 years among archeological records found in Georgia, well before reaching Western Europe.

At the conference, experts and industry leaders will discuss the development of a Wine Tourism Prototype, a model that will focus on the integration of wineries in the local cultural, economic, social and environmental heritage.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Miquel Hudin receives 2016 Geoffrey Roberts Award for book on Georgian wine

05.09.2016 (Hvino News). Wine journalist Miquel Hudin is the 2016 recipient of the prestigious Geoffrey Roberts Award for a new book about Georgian wine.  Founded in 1996 in the UK to commemorate the life and work of pioneer importer Geoffrey Roberts, this annual award is a travel bursary to further the cause of New World or emerging region wines. There is only one recipient per year who is judged to have been making a positive difference in the world of wine. The award is currently presented by The Vintner's Company that received its first Charter in 1363 and is one of the Twelve Great Livery Companies of the City of London in the UK.

Thanks to the Geoffrey Roberts award, Miquel Hudin has now commenced research for a new title in his Vinologue enotourism book series which will extensively cover the different wine regions, grapes, cellars and wines of the Republic of Georgia.  He is currently traveling across the entire country to visit and profile the best wineries as well as to taste and review the wines.  Miquel Hudin is a Certified Sommelier who has judged several international wine competitions and traveled extensively to different wine regions around the world. He is a regular contributor to Decanter, Harpers, the Guild of Sommeliers, and the World of Fine Wine.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Grape harvest begins in Georgia’s wine region Kakheti

03.09.2016. This year’s grape harvest has begun in Georgia’s eastern Kakheti region.

More than 1,850 tons of Rkatsiteli grape and more than 1,110 tons of saperavi has been processed in Dedoplistskaro.

Wine producing companies pay 80 tetris (tetri is 0.01 GEL) for saperavi, 35 tetris for rkatsiteli and mtsvane grapes.

The government adds a subsidy, which is 20 tetris for saperavi and 45 tetris for rtkatsiteli and mtsvane. As a result, winegrowers will get one GEL for a kilogram of saperavi and 80 tetris for a kilogram of rkatsiteli or mtsvane.

Some winegrowers are unhappy with the prices and think they are too low, especially the rkatsiteli price. Locals from the village Chandari say they think one kilo should cost at least one GEL. Some of them told the newspaper Rezonansi that with the government subsidy it won’t be that hard for them to sell the harvest.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Government subsidizes Vintage 2016

31.08.2016. Within the framework of the Vintage 2015 program, the government decided to issue 0.45 GEL per kg for Rkatsiteli grapes, 0.20 GEL per kg for Saperavi and 0.45 GEL for one kg of Kakhetian Green as subsidies. The highest price is on Mujuretuli/Aleksandrouli grapes with wine factories having to pay 2 GEL per kg within the state subsidies program.

The statement was made by Georgia’s Minister of Agriculture Otar Danelia at the opening of the Vintage 2016 harvest coordination center in Telavi, Kakheti Region.

The event was also attended by Deputy Minister of Agriculture Levan Davitashvili, head of the National Wine Agency Giorgi Samanishvili, and representatives of local government and wine producing companies.

Danelia spoke about the importance of the subsidies from the state, adding the decision was made considering the interest of viticulturists as well as the interests of winemakers.

(Republic of) Georgia on my mind: Wine tourism’s future in the “Cradle of Wine”

by Mike Veseth

31.08.2016. In a few days Sue and I will be jetting off to the Republic of Georgia for the first United Nations World Tourism Organization Global Conference on Wine Tourism.We have been trying to learn all we can about Georgia and its wine and wine tourism industries in preparation for the trip. I thought you might be interested in three of the resources we have found especially useful.

Taber’s Final Frontier

George Taber spent the best part of a year circling the globe collecting wine tourism experiences that he chronicled in an entertaining 2009 book called In Search of Bacchus.  Most of the places Taber visited would be on any globetrotter’s wine tourism map — Burgundy, Bordeaux, Tuscany and so on — and his reporting and first person accounts are very interesting. Taber waited until the final chapter to veer off the conventional road map to visit Georgia, which he calls wine’s “final frontier.”

Taber had a great time in Georgia, the “Cradle of Wine,” 8000 vintages and counting. He loved the people and culture and was fascinated by the wine, reporting on the traditional wine-making process using big clay jars called qvervi (which are buried in the earth as shown below) to ferment and store the wine until ready to drink.

Monday, August 29, 2016

10 Georgian wines win awards at China's CWSA 2016 contest

29.08.2016 (Hvino News). Ten wines from four Georgian producers were awarded at China Wine & Spirits Awards (CWSA) 2016. Georgian wines won 6 gold medals, 2 silver and 2 bronze awards. This is a serious progress compared to last year's results, when Georgian products won only 3 medals.

The Georgian prize-winners are:

Gold

Shumi Saperavi Cabernet 2014
Shumi Mtsvane Iberiuli 2013
Kakhuri Gvinis Marani Manavi 2014
Kakhuri Gvinis Marani Saperavi 2013
Tsereteli Wine and Spirits Mukuzani 2014
Georgian Vine and Wine Company Saperavi 2015

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Georgian wine tasting & dinner in Washington

24.08.2016. (Hvino News). Please join us for a Georgian wine tasting and dinner conversation with Janet Cam, Janet Cam Consulting, LLC and Noel Brockett, Director of Operations and Sales, Georgian Wine House.

WHEN: Thursday, August 25, 2016 from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM
WHERE: The Tabard Inn - 1739 N Street Northwest, Washington, DC 20036, United States

The Republic of Georgia is considered to be the birthplace of wine – with supporting archaeological evidence dating back to 6000 BC. But is there more than pure historical interest in this fact? Indeed! An ancient Georgian winemaking technique unearthed by the archaeologists has become a passion once again, in modern Georgia: the qvevri method, recognized by UNESCO as the oldest winemaking tradition on the World Heritage list.

These natural wines made with wild airborne yeast have a cider-like nose and oxidized taste reminiscent of sherry. Though the method is rooted in ancient Georgia, modern winemakers around the world have now created an “amber/orange” wine trend, a renaissance of white wine vinified with skin contact which first took place with the use of qvevri. An example of amber wine is available on our wine list by the glass.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Why now is the time to drink wines from Georgia (the country)

Photo: Melissa Hom
by Chris Crowley

19.08.2016. The main thing you notice about Mariam Losebidze’s 2014 Tavkveri is that it tastes like it’s infused with smoked fat. This is wine, albeit obscure wine, and wine tends not to taste like bacon. But Losebidze is one of only a handful of female winemakers from the country of Georgia — the former Soviet republic sandwiched between Russia and Armenia’s northern border — and her wines are unapologetically bold. They were also, until recently, largely only available in her home country. But now some of America’s most progressive importers and sommeliers have turned their attention to Georgia, which produces wines that are unlike anything else.

Just as you might expect, plenty of Georgian wine is a far cry from grand cru Burgundies or the Pinot Noirs of California. For Western palates, much of it can seem, frankly, weird. In a lot of ways, the growing appreciation for Georgian wine is an extension of the continuing demand for so-called natural wines, the catchall term that refers to wines made with minimal processing, resulting in unpredictable, rustic wines where the makers — as opposed to the grape or region — are often the focus.

Even the most hard-core natural-wine geek will still find a lot to unpack when digging into Georgia’s wine culture, which is 8,000 years old. There are, after all, some 525 indigenous grape varietals, about 50 of which are commonly used in commercial production. That means drinkers will have to familiarize themselves with grapes like Rkatsiteli and Kisi. Georgia is also best known for wines that are aged in qvevri, traditional clay vessels that are sealed with honey and buried in the ground and can result in fresh, young wines that nevertheless have a dense, chalky texture.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Teliani Valley to issue new shares

18.08.2016.  Wine producer Teliani Valley JSC plans to increase chartered capital for the second time this year.

Company’s announced capital is planned to grow by 12 million shares up to 400 million. Nominal value on per share totals to 0.01 GEL. In addition , a preemptive right is scheduled to be abolished on the issued shares, provided that without the decision of shareholders, emission price of newly issued shares should not be less than the price set by the last public offering.

The issue should be discussed at the shareholders meeting of Teliani Valley, which should be held on September 6. To remind, Teliani Valley has announced about attraction of 13 million USD late in July. The company placed 200 million pieces of shares with voting right, which was purchased merely by the shareholders. Nominal value on per share was 0.065 USD.

The shareholders of Teliani Valley are:

  • Liberty Consumer – 47,75%%, 
  • BGEO Group – 27,42%, 
  • Firebird Avrora Fund – 14,21%, 
  • Firebird Republics Fund – 8.82%. 

It is known, that the company is building a beer plant, and the funding will be used for that project. According to preliminary estimation, total project value (excluding VAT) amounts to 37 million USD. “Heineken”, “Amstel” and “Krushovitse” beer brands will be produced in the plant.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Georgia and UNWTO to host first Global Conference on Wine Tourism (+ Conference Program)

17.08.2016 (Hvino News). The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in collaboration with the Georgian National Tourism Administration will present the 1st UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism to be held in the Kakheti wine region of Georgia from 7-9 September.

See the conference program below.

The Conference will have a unique and dynamic format in which the sessions will take place in different wineries. Expert speakers will provide snapshot presentations to lead the debates which will ensue at each of the tables. Participants will be requested to actively participate in the interactive debates with the expert speakers which will be rotating among the tables. The conclusions of the Conference will be a compilation of all the information debated during each meeting.

“Wine tourism represents a growing segment with immense opportunities to diversify demand. In the case of Georgia, this potential is well-known and we are very pleased to be holding the first UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism in the country,” said Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of UNWTO.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

"Uncorking the Caucasus": A new book on wines from Turkey, Armenia, and Georgia

14.08.2016 (Hvino News). Uncorking the Caucasus: Wines from Turkey, Armenia, and Georgia - is a new book by Matthew Horkey and Charine Tan, to be released in September. Based on the authors’ three-month wine travel trip through the Caucasus, this book takes a ground-level approach, which enables the readers to experience an intimate journey through the cradle of wine.

Part travel narrative and part wine guide, this book will take the readers on a tasting tour through the wine regions in the three countries, recommend the best wines each place has to offer, provide anecdotal insights into the wine culture of each country, and discuss the history of ancient winemaking based on archeological evidence.

Turkey, Armenia, and Georgia all claim to be the birthplace of wine. “There are many arguments about the origin of wine; from an archaeological perspective, the signs point to about 8,000 years ago in the Transcaucasia —which includes present - day Armenia, Georgia, and Turkey”, -  the authors point out. Some of those claims are supported by archaeological findings and some by anecdotal evidence. However, this book isn’t about determining the birthplace of wine, but rather the goal is to capture the ethos of a wine region—that is the connection between wine, people, and place.

Uncorking the Caucasus 
Subtitle: Wines from Turkey, Armenia, and Georgia
Release Date: September 2016
Price: USD 22.00
Publisher: The Blue Roster Private Limited, Singapore.

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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Georgian winery Madloba to ship 300,000 bottles to China

13.08.2016. Georgia is about to send a large cache of traditional wine to China.

In the coming days Georgian wine company Madloba (‘thank you’ in English) will export about 300,000 bottles of Georgian wine to the Asian nation.

The large export is possible thanks to assistance from the Entrepreneurship Development Agency (Enterprise Georgia).

Madloba will also organise several international wine exhibitions in China to raise awareness of Georgian wine.

The Madloba wine will be sold at eight different wine houses in China, said a company official.

Meanwhile Enterprise Georgia announced 50 more Georgian wine houses were planned to be built in China. [Read also: 10 Containers of Georgian wine to be shipped to China.]

In recent months Georgia has focused on expanding its wine exports to China. Already more than a dozen wine houses featuring wines from a range of Georgian companies have already opened this year to solely promote the Georgian drink.

Georgian wine tasting in Boston, USA

13.08.2016 (Hvino News). Explore the viticulture of the country of Georgia, the Cradle of Wine, where wine-making traditions go back more than 8000 years, and today there are over 500 distinct grape varietals still grown. Join us to taste through a tremendous lineup of diverse bottles of white, amber, rose, red, and dessert wine, from high quality producers using both European and traditional local methods.

The evening will feature wines from the portfolio of an exciting new Massachusetts-based boutique importer focused exclusively on the country, Georgian Toast, and takes place in the swanky setting of one of the hot new galleries of Boston's South End, Matter and Light Fine Art Gallery. Food pairings, including some authentic to the region, will be provided. All ticket holders receive a commemorative tasting glass that is theirs to keep.

Join us to experience the real deal: fine expressions of indigenous varietals (most notably Rkatsitelli and Saperavi), some from old vines, some organic or bio-dynamic, selected for their excellence from smaller, quality-focused producers.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

10 Containers of Georgian wine to be shipped to China

11.08.2016. 10 containers loaded with Georgian wine were registered in the Tbilisi economic zone today. The products are intended for Georgian wine houses in China.

The Georgian Wine House is a joint venture of the Georgian Tbilinvest Group and the Chinese Suolun company.

The event was attended by Deputy Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Genadi Arveladze, Georgian Deputy Minister of Agriculture Levan Davitashvili and President of Georgian Chamber of Commerce Nino Chikovani.

As Nino Chikovani said, 10 containers will be exported at this stage and the process will continue, as the Chinese market is very important for Georgian exporters.

Davit Ebralidze, head of the Tbilinvest Group, said that 50 Georgian wine houses are planned to be opened in China within one year and 2 million bottles of Georgian wine will be exported.

“The first Georgian Wine House was opened in the city of Yu in July 2015. Georgian wine soon become popular and we are going to open many more such houses in different cities of China”, he said.

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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Official: Georgia's wine and spirits export for 7 months of 2016

10.08.2016 (Hvino News).  According to Georgia's National Wine Agency data, for July 2016, 23 932 067 bottles (0,75 l) of wine have been exported from Georgia to 44 countries worldwide. That is 42% higher than last year.

In the period under review, 55,3 millionUSD worth of wine has been exported, that is 16% higher than last year.

In the period under review, growth is remarkable in the EU countries, in China and other traditional markets: China - 152% (2 475 557), Belarus -122% (575 166), Ukraine - 72% (2 595 947), Russia - 50% (12 748 273), Poland-29% (1 190 926), Estonia - 57% (379 650), Kyrgyzstan-107% (163 966), Germany-21%(174 166), Japan - 12% (1 011 448), Czech Republic - 542% (76 988), UK - 44% (58 618).

The first five of the exporter countries are as follows: Russia (12748273), Ukraine (2595947), China (2475557), Kazakhstan(1924046) and Poland (1190926).

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Hillary Clinton’s favorite Georgian wine costs 600 GEL

06.08.2016. Hillary Clinton, the Democratic candidate in American presidential elections, has her own favorite wine in Georgia, and it turns out she often orders a couple of bottles. The red wine called Kvareli was first tasted by Hillary during her first visit to Georgia. She was the Secretary of State back then (read more here: Video: Hillary Clinton enjoys Georgian culture)

As it has been reported, before Mrs. Clinton sampled this wine, its price was only 25 Georgian Laris, but today it costs several times more – 600 GEL. This fact has become the source of many jokes. People say the price will be even more if Hillary Clinton becomes President.

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Friday, August 5, 2016

Georgia’s Kakheti region welcomes vast Iranian investments

05.08.2016. An Iranian investor is building Green Village in Georgia’s historic winemaking region Kakheti, creating a unique destination for tourists and tourists that will bring money into the region and benefit the country’s economy.

Private Iranian investment holding ARIC LLC, which has operated in Georgia since 2012, aimed to develop its activities in three directions in Kakheti’s Sagarejo Municipality. [Read more here: "Vinichio Valley" project in Kakheti introduced to Georgian business representatives.]

In particular ARIC LLC concentrated in agriculture, eco-tourism, the food industry and construction businesses and seeked to export harvested goods outside Georgia, including EU markets.

ARIC LLC has already invested about $85 million USD to develop the area in Kakheti.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

China launches Georgian wine e-commerce platform

04.08.2016. Dugladze Wine Company will be the first winery to be listed on E-SilkRoad, China’s first online sales channel specifically for Georgian wine (read also: Dugladze to sell wine online in China)

Georgia’s Economy Minister Dimitry Kumsishvili and representatives from Dugladze Wine Company signed the agreement in Shanghai at a promotional event, The Summer of Georgian Wine last week.

The agreement will see the launch of the E-SilkRoad website which will sell exclusively Georgian wine to China, which is currently Georgia’s third largest wine importers, according to Georgia’s Ministry of Economy.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Georgia is number one brandy exporter in Russia

by Giorgi Kalatozishvili

02.08.2016. This year, Georgian companies exported 1.1 million liters of brandy to Russia. Thus, Georgia became number one brandy exporter in the Russian Federation. Georgian products take 48.1 percent of the imported brandy/cognac market. A year ago Georgian producers covered only 20 percent of the Russian market where France completely dominated.

Exporting of Georgian brandy to Russia was restored in 2013 after a seven-year unstated embargo introduced by the Russian government in response to a series of confrontational steps by Tbilisi, including an arrest of four Russian officers for espionage in 2006. Moscow stopped importing not only cognac and wine, but all agricultural products. Cooperation in the trading sphere was restored only after a change of power as a result of the parliamentary elections in 2012 – a victory by The Georgian Dream of billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili.

The most popular brandies in Russia are Old Kakheti, The Heart of Aragvi [brands of KTW], and Sarajishvili. Their average price is 400-600 rubles per bottle, while French cognac got up to 3000 rubles. It is interesting that Georgian brandy producers complain to the ruble falling less than others. Sometimes they make it clear that being a part of the post-Soviet space, traditional Georgian industries are better adapted to a new ruble course than producers from non-CIS countries.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Dugladze to sell wine online in China

01.08.2016. People in China with a taste for Georgian wine can buy their favourite tipple from a number of new Georgian Wine Houses but soon consumers will be able to go online to buy their favourite drink.

A special platform named E-SilkRoad will launch online where traditional Georgian wine will be sold in China.

The first Georgian wine company to sell its wine on the E-SilkRoad website will be Dugladze Wine Company, which will initially export 300,000 bottles of wine for online purchase.

Today Georgia’s Economy Minister Dimitry Kumsishvili and officials from Dugladze Wine Company signed corresponding agreements in China’s biggest city Shanghai.

The agreement signing ceremony was held at a special event named The Summer of Georgian Wine.