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CUISINE AND QVEVRI WINE

 

"Every Georgian dish is a poem" - Aleksander Pushkin

 

Nothing tells more about the spirit and culture of a country than its native food and wine. And Georgia’s food and wine is amongst the best in the world. "Cradle of Wine”- this is the way many people refer to Georgia, as to the motherland of the oldest wines.

 

Georgian cuisine is as diverse, with abundance of food, breathtaking smells, full of surprises and a fiesta, like Georgia itself, its nature and its people.

 

Georgian cuisine is the natural extension of a fertile, mineral-rich landscape fed by the pure waters of the Caucasus Mountains and character of the nation. The cuisine offers a variety of dishes, high in herbs and spices, and a mix of vegetarian and meat dishes: organic fresh meats like pork, beef or lamb, chicken or fish, hazelnuts and walnuts, various sorts of cheese, pickles and pungent seasonings; eggplants, plums, corn, pomegranates, kidney beans, wild herbs, coriander, scallions, hot peppers, mint, basil, garlic and much, much more fill homes and restaurants all around the country every day. Each historical province of Georgia has its own distinct culinary tradition, such as Megrelian, Kakhetian, and Imeretian cuisines.

 

for Georgians, wine is not just a drink. wine strengthens the national spirit and unites guests of traditional Georgian feasts. the Georgian tradition of winemaking in Qvevri is thought to have originated approximately eight thousand years ago. Qvevri are the clay vessels used for making wines according to the traditional Georgian winemaking method. Throughout history, winemaking is a part of its spiritual culture.

 

The importance of both food and drink to Georgian culture is best observed during a feast called supra. The Tamada or toastmaster is a very important and honoured person at a Supra, a traditional Georgian dinner. He creates and sets the whole atmosphere of the supra by creating and proposing toasts which are designed to be little poems by their structure and pieces of wisdom in their meaning. A sense of humour and a good knowledge of traditional toasts are just some of the characteristics of a good Tamada.

 

The Supra accompanies all the key events of Georgian life and stands at the heart of Georgia’s famed hospitality. A Tamada bridges the gap between past, present and future. Be prepared… and remember the best response to a toast is the word ‘Gaumarjos!’ which translates “to our Victory!” Proposing toasts has a certain traditional order: first you often drink to peace, and then to the reason for the gathering (to our guests!).