Kakheti, Ancient Wine Region

Performers demonstrate traditional Georgian dancing in a program for travel agents in Brooklyn, N.Y., in advance of a travel agent familiarization trip for agents.

Performers demonstrate traditional Georgian dancing in a program for travel agents in Brooklyn, N.Y., in advance of a travel agent familiarization trip for agents.

VARDISUBANI, Georgia — When I came through Immigration at Georgia’s Tbilisi Airport, the agent who stamped my passport handed me a gift. It was a small bottle of red wine.

Immigration agents were gifting all arriving foreign-passport holders in this way.

Why wine? Georgia claims to be the place where winemaking was born around 8,000 years ago — although some scholars credit other locations in the vicinity.

Maybe the true origins of winemaking can never be proved, but it is certain Georgians are still making wine using millennia-old methods, and they are making a tourism business out of it, too, particularly in Kakheti, the country’s top winemaking region to the east of Tbilisi. [Read more…]

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