Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Prime Minister visits family-run inn Chateau Dio

24.01.2017. Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili visited last week the Chateau Dio family-run inn, a recipient of a 10,000 GEL grant under the Produce in Georgia program, in the village of Dzirageuli, Ambrolauri District.

The inn is owned by the Dio partnership that uses said grant amount to develop a family-run winemaking business.

As the founders of the partnership revealed to the Prime Minister, the received amount was spent to purchase equipment necessary to enhance the enterprise’s production output. The Dio partnership plans to export its wines in the future.

The Prime Minister wished them success and pointed out the Government’s unconditional commitment to ensuring the revival of viticulture and viniculture and the development of production. According to Giorgi Kvirikashvili, equally important is the development of small, family-run inns, especially since the Ambrolauri Airport launched on same day, which poised to increase the tourist flow and boost employment and economic development in the region.

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Monday, January 23, 2017

Georgian Wine Association presents Georgian wine tourism guide

by Nino Gugunishvili

23.01.2017. The Georgian Wine Association presented a new wine tourism guide at their head office on Friday.

The new guide is the first book published in the English language in Georgia to feature over 120 wineries across all regions of the country.

It has a listing of 40 wine bars and shops, nearly 200 recommended restaurants, and 200 hotels. The book has QR codes which can be scanned through the Smart Phone App to easily find out more about the selected venue. After scanning the QR code, locations appear as pinned on Google Maps. For those who have never used a QR scanning code, the guide explains how it works and how to use it.

The book covers all regions in Georgia with precise and detailed information on what to see, where to stay, where to taste wine and where to dine out. In addition to the brief history of the country, the new guide provides useful information for tourists on how to enter Georgia, and brings useful tips to help visitors get around more easily, with a list of tourism information centers also included.

Ukraine becomes second in imports of Georgian wine in 2016

23.01.2017. Ukraine in 2016 imported around 5.8 million bottles of Georgian wine, and this was over 70 percent more than in 2015.

Georgian Ambassador to Ukraine Mikheil Ukleba said at a meeting of the Tourism Press Club of Ukraine that thanks to this figure Ukraine was second in imports of Georgian wine after Russia being ahead of China in 2016.

In general, imports of goods from Georgia to Ukraine totaled $72 million in 2016, and this was 24 percent more than in 2015, Ukleba said.

“Exports of goods from Ukraine unfortunately slightly fell,” the ambassador said. Ukleba said that growth of imports of citrus fruit by Ukraine from Georgia was seen.


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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Heineken gets Georgia boost with new brewery for licensed production

by Keith Nuthall

17.01.2017. Global Beer Georgia has secured a near-US$20m loan to build a brewery in the country that will produce Heineken brands under licence.

The company, which is owned by Georgian wine producer Teliani Valley, confirmed late last week that it has qualified for an EUR18.6m (US$19.7m) syndicated loan arranged by the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development. The funds will go towards a facility that will produce the Heineken and Amstel brands for the Georgian market.

The brewery, which will also make Czech beer brand Krušovice and locally-developed Georgian beers, will be located in Tsilkani, north of the capital Tbilisi.

The EBRD will lend EUR6.2m from its own accounts, while EUR6.2m will be sourced from Dutch development bank FMO. The remaining EUR6.2m comes from German development bank DEG. The project goal, said an EBRD note, was to "satisfy the demands of the growing market in Georgia".

Forbes features Georgia in its "Top Underrated Wine Regions To Visit"

17.01.2017 (Hvino News).  Leading American business magazine  Forbes in its lifestyle section recently published article The Top 12 Underrated Wine Regions To Visit In 2017: A Month-By-Month Guide.

"After spending most of my year in vineyards around the world, I compiled this month-to-month guide identifying the new frontiers of enotourism", - author Lauren Mowery writes in her preface.

The Top 12 Underrated Wine Regions To Visit In 2017 features Georgia's Kakheti region as follows:
Kakheti, Georgia. Within wine circles and, increasingly, mainstream travel media, the word on Georgia as a vinous destination has spread. Yet few have actually made the trek to this country bordering Armenia and Turkey. Translation: villages remain authentically charming, the countryside still a peaceful refuge and the unique winemaking traditions endure intact. Kakheti, nestled at the foothills of the Caucasus Mountains, is the main region, known for fermenting wine underground in terra-cotta jars called qvevri. A delicious food culture sweetens the incentive to visit.

Monday, January 16, 2017

95% of Georgian wine companies are involved in export diversification

16.01.2017. "95% of Georgian wine-making companies not only agree on the need to diversify exports, but also are directly involved in the process," - the head of the National Wine Agency Giorgi Samanishvili says.

According to him, marketing activities carried out by the Agency and aimed at popularization of Georgian wine in different countries are agreed with the business community.

"In general, a lot of countries in the world focus on one separate market. But in our situation we deal with economic factors and are actively working on the diversification of markets. Marketing campaign is financed by the state, but the ideas are coming from the private sector. Currently in all international shows our wine is presented under the «Georgian wine» brand that facilitates the popularization of Georgian wine, "- Giorgi Samanishvili notes.

In his words, marketing strategy also focuses on the development of small regional wineries.

Perspectives of Georgian wine export to Belarus

16.01.2017 (Hvino News).  The head of National Wine Agency Giorgi Samanishvili had a meeting with the ambassador of Belarus Mikhail Miatlikov, attended also by chairman of National Intellectual Property Center Sakpatenti Nikoloz Gogiladze, and representatives of Ministry of Agriculture. The participants discussed the perspectives of increasing export of Georgian wine to Belarus and possibilities of implementing marketing events.

The meeting venue was at National Museum of Wine.  The meeting participants visited a marani (traditional wine cellar) and had a chance to taste Georgian wines.

Belarus is a traditional market for Georgian wine. It occupied 6th place among the biggest importers in 2016. In 2016, 1 174 362 bottles of wine were exported to Belarus which was 30% more compared to 2015.

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Sunday, January 15, 2017

NATO's Representative for Caucasus receives Georgian chacha as New Year present

15.01.2017 (Hvino News). James Appathurai, NATO Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs and Security Policy and Secretary General’s Special Representative for the Caucasus and Central Asia,  was recently presented with a bottle of Georgian chacha (grappa) produced by Telavi Wine Cellar. The present was given to him as a New Year present by Georgian journalist Ketevan Kardava, who met Appathurai in Brussels for an interview.

A month ago, during Georgian Foreign Minister’s visit to NATO Ministerial, Mr. Appathurai welcomed the Georgian delegation with question “Where is the chacha?”

Mr. Appathurai has visited Georgia on numerous occasions and is known for his interest to Georgian culture.

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Chinese company to buy 5 million bottles of wine from Shilda

15.01.2017 (Hvino News). A contract for five million bottles of wine was signed on January 11 between Georgian producer Shilda and Chinese importer Shanghai Tianzifang Trading.

Shilda company was founded by London-based Georgian businessman and former politician Mikheil Chkartishvili and his daughter Natia.

Company calls this deal as unprecedented, as it amounts to nearly the entire quantity of wine exported from Georgia to China in 2016. The company representatives noted growing interest among Chinese consumers to Georgian wine.

The Georgian ambassador to the Peoples’ Republic of China Mr. David Aptsiauri and a representative of the Georgian-Chinese Friendship Association attended the signing procedure.

Read more about Shilda in: Natia Chkhartishvili shares Shilda's ambitious expansion plans.

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

"The Drinks Business": Georgian wine exports to China spike in 2016

by Natalie Wang

12.01.2017. Georgian wine exports to China grew by 98% to 5.3 million bottles in 2016, the highest growth rate recorded by any country importing wine into the country, according to figures released by the Georgian Wine Association.

Currently ranked as the eastern European country’s third biggest export market, China could soon surpass Ukraine to become Georgia’s second biggest export market, as the two are poised to sign a Free Trade Agreement later this year that would scrap import tariffs on Georgian wines.

Russia remains Georgia’s biggest export market with 27.22 million bottles, followed by Ukraine’s 5.81 million bottles.

However the association believe that wine exports from Georgia to China could grow to exceed 10 million bottles by the end of 2017, which could mean that within five years China could become Georgia’s biggest export market.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Official: 50 million bottles of wine exported to 53 countries in 2015

04.01.2017. 50 million bottles of wine exported to 53 countries in 2015 In 2016 Georgia exported 50 million bottles of wine to the world's 53 countries.

According to National Wine Agency, the figure is 38% higher than in 2015.

It should be noted that exports has risen to the European Union, China, the US and other traditional markets. compared to 2015, exports to China grew by 98% (5 299 149 bottles), Ukraine - 70% (5 811 050 bottles), Russia - 49% (27 222 076 bottles), Poland - 46% (2 329 820 bottles), Canada - 34% (210 936 bottles), Belarus - 30% (1 174 362), the UK - 28% (97 226), Estonia - 25% ( 631 632), Kyrgyzstan - 24% (230 776), the US - 19% (294 382), Latvia - 19% (1 258 632), Japan - 15% (159 654), Germany - 6% (292 454), the Czech Republic - 353% (119 648), etc.

The top five countries that import Georgian wine are: Russia (27 222 076 bottles), Ukraine (5 811 050 bottles), China (5 299 149 bottles), Kazakhstan (3 393 435 bottles) and Poland (2 329 820 bottles).


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Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy 2017 to readers of Hvino News! Win special prizes now!

Happy 2017 to readers of Hvino News!

For New Year, we are offering two special prizes in our unique Win!Wine Georgian wine lottery

To play, simply write any comment or just a smiley   to the photos of wine prizes: at prize.hvino.com/6 (rare and expensive red Usakhelouri), and prize.hvino.com/5 (prize-winning white Mtsvane made in qvevri). That's all. Computer will pick the winners randomly from people who left comments. 

Hvino's team wishes the best of success, prosperity, and health to our readers! Good luck!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Welcome to Georgia campaign kicks off for the holiday season

26.12.2016. Enterprise Georgia is welcoming tourists arriving to the country through any of the three international airports of Tbilisi, Batumi or Kutaisi, with a newly initiated Welcome to Georgia campaign, through which all guests will receive a branded bottle of Georgian Saperavi at passport control.

The label of the bottle of Georgian wine from the Kakheti region will also contain information on the success of the wine-making business in Georgia. 60,000 bottles of Saperavi will be given away within the framework of the marketing campaign which is being run for the fifth time this December.


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Thursday, December 22, 2016

Why the word for wine is similar in many languages

by Joe Slater

22.12.2016. I’ve observed that the Greek and Hebrew words for wine, oinos and yayin, are similar. Does this imply that there was a Mediterranean trade in alcoholic beverages?

The making and consumption of grape wine (as opposed to such “wines” as date wine, rice wine, etc.) had spread all over the Mediterranean world and parts of Europe by an early historical period, and the similar words for wine that exist in many European and Semitic languages all point to a common source for both the beverage and its name. Thus, to take a small sample, besides Greek oinos and Hebrew yayin, we have Latin vinum, Russian вино, Lithuanian vynas, German Wein, Welsh gwin, Armenian gini, Georgian ghvino (ღვინო), and Amharic (the main language of Ethiopia) weyinina , to say nothing of such farther-flung cognates as Swahili mvinyo and Maori waina.

Many of these words are obviously borrowings. Ancient Russians, Lithuanians, Germans, and other central and northern European peoples did not grow grapes or make wine, and a widely disseminated word for it could not have originated in any of their languages, just as it could not have done so in Amharic, Swahili, or Maori. And although such a word theoretically could have originated in Latin vinum, Greek oinos,or Hebrew yayin, since ancient Italy, Greece, and Palestine were all grape-growing and wine-making regions, this, too, is unlikely, because the earliest grape cultivation and wine production that historians can point to took place in the Caucasus.

Magical festive fair „Bulbuli Christmas Market“ on the 24th of December

22.12.2016 (Hvino News). By the time holiday sounds fill the air throughout the city, „Bulbuli Christmas Market“ will transform the „Muza“ Cultural Centre into a magical wonderland, complete with the delicious aroma of a Christmas bakery, mulled wine, local specialties and plenty of inspired crafts, ideal for any last minute Christmas gifts or stocking stuffers.

The „Bulbuli Christmas Market“ will feature a Christmas village atmosphere, highlighting the most interesting and your favourite participants (restaurants, winemakers, handcrafts, eco-products, etc.). Beautifully decorated stalls will offer you traditional Georgian dishes such as Satsivi, piglet roast, Elarji, wine, Chacha and hot alcoholic drinks, as well as, some well-known and beloved European and Asian food.

Soak up the Christmas atmosphere while picking out artisan-handcrafted gifts for loved ones, including handbags, art pieces, jewellery, bath and body items, home goods, toys and much more!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Badagoni wine company celebrates 10th anniversary in London

20.12.2016. After a celebration dedicated to the 10th anniversary of the Badagoni Wine Company held in the region of Kakheti last November, the Institute of Directors in London hosted a follow-up event organized by the Georgian Wine Club.

The Georgian Wine Club is a UK-based wine importing company, founded by Berdia Qamarauli and his business partner Dennis Muriu, with an online presence selling exclusive, Georgian Fine Wines.

“The event was one of the most important for us. Badagoni Wine Company is our biggest supplier and a trusted partner,” said Qamarauli. “This year was especially important for them as it is their 10th year anniversary. The celebratory event was also a very important evening for Georgian wine in general. No such event has been held in the UK before and we are very proud that we managed to do it together with Badagoni and in association with British Georgian Chamber of Commerce and Georgian Embassy to the UK. The event was attended by representatives of the British government, business persons, UK media, and Georgian diaspora. The Georgian Wine Club intends to organize such events in future to help promote Georgian wine in the UK even further.”

Monday, December 19, 2016

Readers win free wine, more valuable prizes to come

19.12.2016 (Hvino News). Hvino's “Win!Wine - magic winter wine lottery”, launched with start of holiday season,  is bringing fruits. The first prize winners have been announced - Gia Gagua (Tbilisi) and Keti Svimonishvili (Telavi). The winners have already received the wines from Jakeli and Milorauli, and are quite happy with the prizes: see the photos.

Six Georgian companies have already contributed their wines to the lottery fund. More winemakers who wish to join Win!Wine project are coming up.

Prize drawings are held on Tuesdays. In addition, according to lottery organizers, some very exclusive and expensive wines (up to 100 US dollars worth) will be offered for win during New Year's night and Christmas night!

Win!Wine was conceived not only to entertain readers of Hvino News, but also to help high-quality smaller wine producers to promote their products cost-efficiently. “Even the smallest winemaker can afford to contribute a bottle of his wine as a prize to the lottery, and we will publish the label and description of his product”, - said Inge Olsson from Hvino News, who is manager of the lottery project.

The rules of the lottery are simple: The photo of prize bottle is posted in facebook page. To enter the lottery, just write a comment to the photo of bottle. After 7 days, the winner is drawn randomly from people who wrote comments. (Attention: Just a “like” is not enough, you must write comment - any text in any language)

Saturday, December 17, 2016

History of Georgia’s winemaking exhibited in labels

17.12.2016 (Hvino News). Georgian National Museum / Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia invites you to the exhibition "The Art of Labels" which is dedicated to the famous Georgian brandy manufacturer David Sarajishvili.

The exhibition will be open on December 20, 2016 -  January 9, 2017.

"The Art of Labels" is the first large-scale exhibition of Georgian wine labels, which will showcase up to 200 labels from the end of the 19th century and early 20th century.

Georgia's wine and spirits industry was presided by Giorgi Bolkvadze, David Sarajisvhili, Zakaria Jorjadze, Alexandre Chavchavadze, Ivane Mukhran-Batoni, Achille Murat, Dimitri Kipiani, Philipe Chelidze, Katsia Adanaia, Giorgi Danelia, The Kostava brothers, Chachibaias' and Sesiashvili. They produced wine, brandy, champagne, vodka, fortified wines, grape juice and vinegar, which were prominent not only across Georgia, but in Russian Empire, United States and Europe. Their wines have received numerous awards, Grand Prix, medals and diplomas.

The success of the Georgian wine, along with the quality, was also determined by its design. Wine manufacturers produced high-quality labels printed locally (Constantine Meskhishvili, E. Kheladze, Arsen Kalandadze print shops), and outside Georgia - Lodz, Warsaw, Baku, Vilnius and other cities.

The exhibition "The Art of Labels" will showcase wine label collections from Georgian National Museum, Grand Prix and diploma of Dimitri Kipiani, labels from private collections and early samples of cognac from David Sarajishvili's collection.

The project is organized by the International Film Festival Kinovino and supported by the National Wine Agency. The curator of the exhibition is Nino Kacharava, consultants - Bondo Kalandadze and Giorgi Sarajishvili.

Address: Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia, 3 Shota Rustaveli Ave. Tbilisi, Georgia.

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Friday, December 16, 2016

Hudin reveals Georgia's wine secrets

16.12.2016. In the December issue of Meininger's Wine Business International, wine journalist Miquel Hudin has written an article entitled "Who's Who in Georgia". A regular feature in their bimonthly magazine, this article works to explain the inner workings of Georgian wine to those in the trade and acts as an industry reference to the multiple layers that make up the current Georgian wine sector by delving into the large, "wine factory" production as well as the "boutique" qvevri producers.

Miquel was selected to write the article after traveling extensively throughout the entire country during 2016 for his new Georgian wine guide. As the first independent guide to the wines, wineries, and history of Georgian wine, the book is set for release in Spring of 2017 with global availability.


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Thursday, December 15, 2016

‘Well, Hello Saperavi’: US hosts Georgian wine tasting series in December

15.12.2016. Wines from Georgia are exploding in popularity in the United States this month thanks to a new campaign ‘Well, Hello Saperavi’ to promote Georgian wine made with the flesh and skin of red Saperavi grape varieties across Washington D.C.

Throughout December wine lovers, wine professionals and enthusiasts in the US are invited to try the unique taste of Saperavi wine during various wine events held in Washington D.C.

People will be able to taste dry Saperavi, best-buy Saperavi, qvevri Saperavi, natural-wine Saperavi, oaked Saperavi, young-vine Saperavi, old-vine Saperavi, Saperavi rose, semi-sweet Saperavi and juicy Saperavi.

During the one-month campaign different wine shops, restaurants and cafes in the city will host wine tasting events, which are being organised by the Georgian National Wine Agency.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Tbilisi's new organic restaurant launched by winemaker and film director

11.12.2016 (Hvino News). The polyphonic choir of Tbilisi's food and wine scene just got a new singer: Poliphonia is the name of a new restaurant in Georgia's capital city. It is a joint project of two creative people - an organic wine maker John Wurdeman and a film director Levan Koguashvili.

Poliphonia was inaugurated yesterday with an opening reception, which gathered Tbilisi's intelligentsia including writers, diplomats, journalists, business people representing tourism and food sectors.

A film director's touch is felt immediately in the colorful setting of the restaurant, opened in Tbilisi's historical neighborhood Sololaki, at Amaghleba Street 23 Map . The cozy interior is a mixture of European art-nouveau style with its century-old original chandeliers, and just a bit oriental chic with old carpets and traditional tablecloths.

A winemaker's influence is clearly reflected in the restaurant's menu, thought its wine list is not bombarding visitors with hundreds of hard-to pronounce wine names, like some other "shrines of wine" in Tbilisi do. The wine list is compact but carefully selected: all wines are organic (made without use of fertilizers and other chemical add-ons) from smaller boutique wineries.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Hvino's Win!Wine Lottery's first winner announced

30.11.2016 (Hvino News) Many readers of Hvino News already know about the holiday present which we have prepared - our Win!Wine winter wine lottery.

Win!Wine is not only about entertaining our readers, but is also aimed to help high-quality smaller wine producers to promote their products without spending large marketing budgets.

After seven days from launch the first prize drawing was performed online, which can be seen here. The first winner was George Gagua from Tbilisi. He is apparently quite an expert in Georgian wines so he appreciated the rare and exclusive organic saperavi which he won. "Winning a car would not have pleased me as much!" - reads Mr. Gagua's facebook page, where he is inviting his friends to taste his prize wine together (see screenshot).

The prizes will be drawn every week, on Tuesdays. Currently the second prize - a bottle of qvevri-made white Kisi wine from Milorauli - is available for win! To participate in lottery, just write any comment to the photo: http://bit.do/prize-2. (Attention: Just a “like” is not enough, you must write comment - any text in any language).  This lottery is for people in Tbilisi region.

All the ongoing lotteries, with calendar, locations and description of prizes are posted on special lottery page.

"Win!Wine is non-commercial and completely free for everybody including the winemakers", - explained lottery organizers. “Even the smallest winemaker can afford to contribute a bottle of his wine as a prize to the lottery, and we will publish the label and description of his product”. The lottery will be international, so people from many regions of the world will have the chance to win free bottles of best quality Georgian wines. The readers are only requested to like Hvino News page.

Happy Holidays and good luck!

Georgia wine exports to China reach historic high

by Natalie Wang

10.12.2016. Georgia’s wine exports to China registered the highest growth rate among all countries in the first 11 months of the year, the strongest sign yet that the eastern European country’s push into one of the world’s biggest wine markets is paying off.

According to the latest figures released by Georgia’s National Wine Agency under the Ministry of Agriculture, wine exports to China grew by 128% to about 4.89 million bottles, making China the country’s third largest export destination following Russia (about 24.9 million bottles) and Ukraine (about 5.18 million bottles).

Georgia has spent US$500,000 to “tell the stories of its wines in China”, wrote China Daily, and a centre on Georgian wines was set up in Beijing in 2015 to promote its wines and wine culture.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Real old world: Georgia's ancient vineyards

by Rob Crossan

07.12.2016. Why are Stalin’s favourite wines on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List? We head to Georgia’s vineyards to find out.

TWO LITRES OF wine. In one gulp. From out of something that looks a lot like a horn transported from deep in the Austrian Alps.

"Yes, it happens," says my guide, Eka. "Sometimes to really get the feast going, it's considered necessary for each man to drink this much. That's before the party really gets started, of course."

This is the kind of wine consumption that would put lesser men (and women) into the nearest accident and emergency unit. But for a genuine supra – the Georgian word for an endless all day feast of food and wine – this kind of heroic (or suicidal) quantity of quaffing from a horn-shaped vessel is judged as the quickest and most efficient way possible to get a proper Georgian bacchanalia (aka drunken celebration) underway.

Luckily, the wine produced in this little-known corner of the Caucasus is a cut above what you might expect from a country on the fringes of the former Soviet Union.

Official: Georgia increased wine exports by 40%

07.12.2016 (Hvino News). According to official data, this year wine exports from Georgia in January-November to 53 countries exceeded 45.6 million bottles (0.75 l), which is 40% higher than in the same period last year.

In January-November 104 million USD worth of wine have been exported, that is 17% higher than the similar data of the last year.

The tendency of growing export was observed in the beginning of the year  reached its maximum in November: January - 1 521 802 bottles, February - 3 009 754, March - 2 877 640,  April - 3 862 589, May - 3 220 323, June - 4 327 983, July -3 766 752,  August - 3 793 843, September -4 049 034, October - 5 264 684 and  November - 6 665 311 bottles.

Increase of export is notable not only to EU but also to USA and other  traditional markets:

China - 128% (4 886 145 bottles), Ukraine – 73% (5 179 454), Belarus - 62% (1 060 806), Russia -  48% (24 914 877), Poland - 47% (2  123 500), Estonia - 37% (588 450), Canada – 30% (198 456), USA – 27% (294 382), UK-25% (87 428), Latvia – 15% (1 139 706), Japan - 14% (144 126), Kirghizia – 9% (202 666), Germany - 4% (270 176).