The country of Georgia—not to be confused with the American state with the same name—is a small nation located between Europe and Asia. Georgia is not yet a top destination for most tourists, but is quickly becoming more famous.
My husband and I recently visited Georgia and enjoyed exploring its capital, churches, and wineries.
... is Georgia’s cosmopolitan capital city.
The city has interesting buildings...
....and a funicular that goes up to....
...a famous amusement park!
....are located all over Georgia.
We often lit candles for family inside the monasteries.
....is a town located on a hill in Georgia’s wine region.
While in Signagi, we enjoyed walking along the city’s ancient walls overlooking the Caucuses Mountains...
....and visited several Georgian wineries...
This is one of winery’s cellars. Here, they ferment the grapes in the traditional Georgian way—in a pot on the floor!
There was a kitten at this tasting!
At another winery...
....they had metal tanks covered in styrofoam that are used to store wine. These date back to the Soviet era.
More pots! This method of making wine in pots is called qvervi and is said to date back to the 6th century B.C.
A more modern technology is used to bottle the wine!
We also visited an underground winery that uses a tunnel to store wine.
Built in the 1960s, this 7.7-kilometer tunnel holds over 25,000 bottles of wine!
Today, tastings are held in the tunnel.
We also saw crushed grapes being pumped into a qvervi where they will ferment for 5 to 6 months.
Unlike the European method of making wine, the qvervi method uses the entire grape—skin, stem, and all!
If you don’t like wine, there are lots of other delicious treats to enjoy in Georgia.
Be sure to try lobani, a bean stew served with corn cakes...
...and Borjomi, a nationally-beloved brand of sparkling water sourced from Georgian mineral springs.
We stayed at the Art Hotel Winery 1896, which is located in a former wine factory, in Tbilisi. Orko’s Wines in Signahi offers wonderful tastings for 15 lari (about $6) per person. Anthony Bourdain visited Georgia on an episode of his wonderful show Parts Unknown—watch the episode to learn more before you visit!