[...] This is quintessential Kakheti, where almost every household makes wines, often for personal use but also for sale. Each household is intensely proud of its achievements. Wine is fundamental, a taproot of Georgian culture and psyche. In the villages, making and drinking wine is not a mannered, refined pursuit, but as basic as drawing water from a well, a thing to be enjoyed regularly and simply.
A notice to those who explore this life: According to tradition, Georgians believe that guests come from God. Moreover, ask about a family’s wine and you will have paid your interviewee a high compliment and be offered a challenge.
What often will follow is a detour into Georgian hospitality, which is an adventure in itself, as you will be greeted as if you have come on foot over the snowy ridge, cold, lonely and starving. Food will be piled, wine will be served, and countless toasts will be made, no matter how many toasts you have already survived. [...]
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
A diversion of sorts: C.J. Chivers' piece on Georgian wine in the New York Times travel section...