Kakheti wine region
Kakheti is by far the most important of Georgia's eight wine regions, home to more than two-thirds of the nation’s vineyards. Because almost all the big wineries are based there, it produces 80% of Georgia’s wine. But these official figures are misleading, because they only reflect commercial production.
Most Georgian wine is made and drunk at home. In the countryside almost every family has a row or two of vines from which they make their own wine. Few of these private vineyards are counted in the official figures, and none of the home production. Even in the cities, where most live in Soviet-era highrise blocks, people make their own wine on their balconies and in the communal basements. Probably less than a tenth of Georgian wine gets bottled and sold commercially.
So Kakheti’s apparent dominance is in many ways an illusion; it just happens to be where all the export-oriented wineries are. That said, their wines are the only ones non-Georgians have the opportunity to try!
Kakheti itself lies at Georgia’s eastern end, along the valley of the Alazani River which flows south-east to north-west paralleling the mighty Caucasus mountain range to the north (the border with Russia). Being far from the moderating influence of the Black Sea the climate is quite continental, with average temperatures close to freezing in January and around 25°C in July with 30°C days common. There’s reasonable amounts of rainfall year-round, peaking in May/June. It’s quite similar to inland southern France, though with hotter summers and colder winters, and eminently suitable for fine wine provided the varieties grown are sufficiently frost-hardy.
Decanting Club wines from: Kakheti
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