15 Delicious Georgian Wines to Try in Tbilisi

Chateau Mukhrani wines | © Dominic Lockyer / Flickr
Chateau Mukhrani wines | © Dominic Lockyer / Flickr
Photo of Baia Dzagnidze
Writer30 December 2017

Georgia has been making wine for at least 8,000 years and is considered to be the oldest winemaking country in the world. Its traditional winemaking method in qvevri, or clay jars, has been put on UNESCO’s list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Therefore, once here, tasting wine is a must-do activity at Tbilisi’s wine bars. The choice is so diverse, you might be confused as to what to try, so we have put together some of the best wines for you to taste.

Giuaani – Mtsvane Qvevri 2014

Mtsvane is a dry, white wine using the traditional method with clay jars – qvevri. The wine is fermented in qvevri for five months, then moved to oak barrels for four months to complete its maturity. The wine has a light golden color characterized by a rich fragrance and mixed flavors of exotic fruits, cacao, and cinnamon. The wine goes well with pork, meat, and cheese.

Chateau Khashmi – Kisi

This dry, unfiltered amber wine made in qvevri has a dark straw color and light aromas. The whole process of winemaking – maceration, aging, and fermentation – is done in those clay jars without any additions, filtration, or sulfites.

Orgo – Rkatsiteli 2014

Also made in qvevri, this amber-hued white wine is produced solely from Rkatsiteli grapes. The wine is aged in clay jars for at least six months, which determines its dark color. Distinguished by aromas of dried apricot, truffle, almond, and hay, the wine has velvety tannins and tastes more like a red wine rather than a white you might be used to.

Last night was a night of many firsts. I attended my first potluck wine tasting organized by @wineantics. A group of local industry professionals gathered at Crystal City Wine Shop and everyone brought an interesting bottle to share. I had my first hard cider, by @castlehillcider, my first #TexasWine by @weddingoakwine and my first #GeorgianWine by #OrgoWinery. Each was so unique and all were quite good. My contribution was the Georgian #wine, and it was a hit with the group. Clocking jn at just 12.5% alcohol, it boasted an unexpected body and depth, with earth-inflected flavors of cool blueberries, pomegranate and dried prune laced with dusty cocoa nuances. Quite tasty and interesting, with great structure and a finish that just kept going. Produced from 100% old vine Saperavi, it is fermented and then aged underground in large clay amphora called qvervi, a traditional Georgian #winemaking method that dates back over 8,000 years. Many thanks to @winesofgeorgia and @deussenglobalcommunications for providing the sample and to Jenn for organizing and our host Thad for generously allowing us to gather in his wonderful #wineshop after hours. I'm always happy to raise a glass to new wine experiences! 🍷 #TheFermentedFruit #winestagram #wineofthenight #winetime #winelover #redwine #vinho #wine🍷#picoftheday #instawine #justwine #lovewine #wino #winedown #igwine #winenot #thewinepoor #wein #vino #wines #winelife #winegeek #thegoodlife #winery

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Winiveria – Kisi 2015

Made in the European style, Winiveria’s Kisi is a dry white wine with a pale amber color made from Kisi grapes. It has the aromas of sweet fruits and citrus, a well-balanced acidity, and mild taste. The wine goes well with fish, cheese, and mushrooms.

Usakhelauri Vineyard – Usakhelauri 2015

Usakhelauri one of the rarest grape types of Georgia. Therefore, it is one of the most expensive ones as well. The vineyards of Usakhelauri grapes are characterized by a low harvest volume, and the cultivation is very difficult as well. This particular Usakhelauri grape is harvested from the best terrain and is ruby in color with aromas of red and white cherries. Therefore, the wine is a dessert wine and goes well with fruits and fruitcakes.

Orovela – Saperavi 2006

This rich ruby-colored wine has rich blackberry, black mulberry, and cherry flavors. Velvety tannins from the most delicate oak barrels provide the wine with a subtle structure.


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Kindzmarauli Marani – Kindzmarauli Original

Kindzmarauli is a red, naturally semi-sweet wine made from Saperavi grapes grown in the Kindzmarauli micro-zone. With a deep garnet color, velvety taste, and long finish, Kindzmarauli Original has intense aromas of raspberry and blackberry.

Mukado – Traditional Qvevri Mtsvane 2014

The color of Traditional Qvevri Mtsvane wine is amber with golden tints and is defined by ripe and dry fruit flavors of apricot and yellow plums together with balancing honey and nutty overtones. The wine pairs perfectly with lighter meats such as turkey, pork, and quail, as well as seafood and salads. It also goes well with Asian hot-sour flavors, spicy curries, and pizza.

Tchotiashvili – Rcheuli Qvevri Khikvi 2014

Under the label “Rcheuli Qvevri,” the company has put together the best examples of the vintage. This dry white wine is made from Khikhvi grapes with traditional methods in clay jars. It has a straw color and is mild and complex in taste.

Mildiani – Kisi 2011

Made in qvevri with traditional methods, the wine is a dark straw color with amber tones. It has rich fruit flavors of peach and apricot together with honey.

Georgian wines! #mildiani #mildianifamilywinery #probkawine

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Alaverdi Monastery Cellar since 1011 – Rkatsiteli 2013

This white wine is amber in color with a golden hue and is identified with different aromas of fresh and dried fruits and hints of walnut. It has a long-lasting, velvety finish and a very slight off-dry taste.

Monastery Wine ” is a millennium brand of Alaverdi Monastery Cellar made by the Alaverdi Monastery congregate in the XIth century cellar. The wine is produced by endemic variety of Kakhetian vine in unique clay vessel – Qvevri. Alaverdi Royal Monastery is historically known by its qvevris and cellar. History of Alaverdi Monastery takes start from the VI-th century. It is located at the foot of the greatest Caucasus Mountain, on the west bank of Alazani River in Kakheti. The valleys are well known by its fertility. The royal temple of Alaverdi Monastery has always been the place of Kakheti and Hereti Kings’ prayer and performance of inhabitant monks. Archeologists discovered remains of the VIII-X century old cellar in the Alaverdi Monastery yard. The cellar contained different sized qvevris. In the XI-th century the King Kvirike the Great built an outstanding cellar compatible to the royal monastery together with the St. George Cathedral. Since 2006 archeological studies of this ancient cellar has taken place, which revealed up to 50 qvevris with 60 tons of wine capacity. Sophisticated shapes of qvevris are distinguished with its unique method of placement in the ground. Rehabilitation works of the XI-th century cellar was conducted by financial support of the company “Badagoni. Renewed cellar has been functioning since 2006. This oldest site of wine culture turned into the “golden mine” of qvevri wines made by the traditional Kakhetian technology. #georgianwine #georgia #sakartvelo #kartli #gvino #8000yearsofhistory #monastery #wine #sommelier #sommelierlife #rkatsiteli #mtsvane #alaverdi #alaverdimonasterycellar #cellar #qvevri #qvevriwine #bbchistory #bbcnews #winelover #winelove #tbilisilovesyou

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Lagvinari – Saperavi 2011

Lagvinari’s Saperavi is a deep red, dark cherry color. The wine has berry flavors with hints of dry plum, pepper, and cherry.

Kakhuri – Saperavi Reserve 2005

This red wine is aged in barrel for 24 months, which results in flavors of strawberry, spice, and a definite hint of vanilla with licorice and subtle oak tones.

Chateau Mukhrani – Reserve Royale Goruli Mtsvane 2012

Goruli Mtsvane is an indigenous and unusual white varietal, which can create very different and aromatic wines. Reserve Royale Goruli Mtsvane has a rich bouquet of grapefruit flower, strengthened with pear and subtle oak aging. The wine goes best with fish, poultry or vegetable salads.

Marani – Reserve 2007

Made from Saperavi grapes, Marani’s Reserve is a deep ruby red color infused with aromas of red fruit jam, cherry liquor, and spicy-smoky tones.

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