Best Wineries in Kakheti

Best Wineries in Kakheti

Wine-making is not just a significant symbol of Georgia; it's arguably the country's most prized heritage. With an 8,000-year-old history of grape cultivation - one of the earliest in the world - Georgia's wine industry has deep roots in the land and culture. The multitude of grape varieties, wine types, and the unique tradition of aging wines in cava are testament to the nation's deep-seated love and respect for wine. Sprinkled across the country are countless wineries, both large and small, each contributing to this time-honored tradition.

Kakheti takes the lead as the country's principal wine-producing region. This is where the highest concentration of wineries can be found, producing everything from popular varieties to unique, one-of-a-kind beverages. In this article, we're set to explore the finest wineries in Kakheti, where you'll have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the region's extraordinary wine culture.

Vakirelebi Kakheti House near Sighnaghi

Best Wineries In Kakheti

You can enjoy delicious homemade dishes, learn to cook them yourself, taste local wine and chacha, and participate in the Rtveli Grape Harvest Festival at the hospitable Demetrashvili House. This family not only founded their own wine production, but also became a guide to the world of winemaking for many visitors to Georgia. The name "Vakirelebi" originates from a small Kakhetian village, Vakiri, where a cozy winery is located, just 10 kilometers from the "city of love," Sighnaghi.

Here, you can learn about all the stages of winemaking, including taking part in harvesting the grapes, pressing them, and gaining insight into how the must is stored in huge clay vessels buried underground for several months. The hospitable hosts will prepare a table laden with a variety of local dishes for you. Naturally, at "Vakirelebi's House of Kakheti," you will be tasting a variety of wines, among which are such famous varieties as Rkatsiteli, Saperavi, and the unique Varikula biovino. The feast would not be complete without the famous locally-produced Georgian chacha. Particularly curious guests of "Kakheti House" will have the opportunity to learn the art of making khinkali, khachapuri, churchkhela, mtsvadi (kebab), and many other dishes. This combination of activities offers the perfect immersion into the wine culture! Don't miss out!

Ruispiri Winery

Best Wineries In Kakheti

A new wave of winemaking has graced the Georgian market - the art of biodynamic winemaking. Ruispiri Winery, a leader in this emerging practice, embraces the principles of wholly natural vine cultivation and wine aging in quavers without the use of any chemical additives. Under the thoughtful stewardship of Giorgi Adalashvili, a space has been created that seamlessly merges the complexities of wine production into a transparent and comprehensible process.

Here at Ruispiri, you're invited to wander through the vineyards, absorb captivating stories about Georgian winemaking traditions, sample the national cuisine, and if you're so inclined, even stay overnight. All amenities for a comfortable stay are thoughtfully provided.

The winery's spectacular setting encourages a leisurely retreat and a genuine introduction to traditional Georgian viticulture and winemaking. From the comfort of the restaurant-veranda, take in sweeping views of the Alazan Valley and the historical Alaverdi Monastery. It's an experience that's as enriching as it is charming.

Jakeli Wines

Jakeli Wines stands out as a noteworthy winery complete with a charming restaurant, vibrant vineyards, and exceptional wine. Head winemaker Zaza Jakeli takes great pride in crafting his signature wine, aptly named "Jakeli," which has become a favorite among visitors to this family-run winery. The welcoming ambiance, fostered by Hatuna, Zaza's wife, invites guests to relax, engage in warm conversation, and, of course, enjoy a glass of their excellent wine.

Hatuna's kitchen serves a diverse menu, with dishes lovingly prepared using only the freshest local ingredients. Her culinary creations are so enticing that they alone are a reason to visit. The elegantly arranged table and the tastefully designed interior of the facility provide a perfect backdrop for those with a penchant for photography or videography.

Furthermore, the winery features a veranda that offers a splendid view, creating the perfect setting to leisurely savor wine and delicious meals while taking in the breathtaking panorama and fresh air. When journeying through Kakheti, Jakeli Wines is a must-visit destination!

Shilda Winery

Stunning vineyard views, proprietary wine production, a romantically decorated restaurant, and fantastic cuisine – welcome to Shilda Winery! This is a destination sought after for its laid-back wine tasting experience in a calm and inviting atmosphere. Shilda Winery produces wines using both traditional Georgian methods (matured in qvevri) and European techniques. This guarantees that their wine selection will undoubtedly impress.

Beyond beverages, the creators of Shilda Winery offer guests a substantial array of appetizers, cheeses, and hearty dishes. Here, you can indulge in mtsvadi, khachapuri, khinkali, and many other delights integral to a Georgian feast. Everything is tastefully presented and crafted with love.

This local winery produces renowned wine varieties, such as Mukuzani, Akhasheni, Saperavi, Kindzmarauli, Manavi, Khvanchkara, Tsinandali, and Rkatsiteli. Be sure not to miss out on this extraordinary Georgian winery experience!

Begaso Family Winery

Best Wineries In Kakheti

Begaso is a quaint winery tucked away in the village of Sabue in Kakheti, where the gracious hosts will enthusiastically guide you through their wine-making methods while serving delectable Georgian dishes. Here, you can stay at their guest house, savoring fine wines, relishing excellent cuisine, and of course, reveling in the breathtaking mountain panorama.

Begaso specializes in crafting wines in qvevri and typically offers visitors a chance to taste unique varieties such as Rkatsiteli (both amber and rosé), Kisi, Khikhvi, and Mtsvane. The winery, established recently in 2018, has not yet become widely known within the tourist sphere. As a result, it offers everything necessary for a comfortable introduction to the Kakhetian method of wine production without the crowds.

Begaso is truly a splendid place to experience the warm embrace of Georgian hospitality while immersing yourself in the local wine culture. Don't miss this charming hideaway!

SchuchmannBest Wineries In Kakheti

Nestled in the heart of the Alazan Valley and surrounded by a veil of enigmatic blue mountains, Schuchmann stands as a magnificent winery and hotel combination. Equipped with a gym, game room, swimming pool, spa, sauna, and ample space to endlessly soak in the views, this property offers an immersive experience in both luxury and winemaking tradition.

The architecture of the hotel itself resembles a medieval castle, complete with wine processing tanks located right in the courtyard. Wine is also crafted in qvevri, a sight you'll surely encounter during your stay. The welcoming proprietors will warmly greet you and gladly unveil the secrets of their traditional winemaking practices.

In addition to the main building, there are several stunning villas on the premises, ready to become your comfortable home away from home. The accompanying chic boutique hotel features a restaurant where you can enjoy delectable Georgian cuisine paired with exquisite wine tastings, an experience sure to introduce you to the world of traditional winemaking and the unique local culinary scene.

Situated just a few kilometers from Telavi, the capital of Kakheti, in the quaint village of Kisiskhevi, Chateau Schuchmann boasts an excellent location. This prime positioning ensures easy access to the surrounding attractions, making it an unmissable stop on your tour of the region.

Kbilashvili Winery and Kvevri Workshop

Best Wineries In Kakheti

Nestled near Telavi, the Kbilashvili Winery extends an immersive wine experience far beyond standard tastings and vineyard tours. As professional clay amphora makers, the Kbilashvili family opens the doors to the art of creating kvevri – a sight rarely seen up close. Usually, you'd only witness the necks of these vessels protruding from the ground at wineries, but here, you'll appreciate their true size and volume. You'll gain an idea of the vast quantities of wine crafted in Kakheti's villages and learn about the meticulous, multi-step hand-making process of each kvevri. And, of course, wine tasting is an essential part of your visit.

Babaneuris Marani

Tucked amidst lush green mountains in the quaint village of Babaneuris, the Babaneuris Marani offers an opulent retreat infused with the essence of Kakhetian wine culture. This cozy hotel boasts endless vineyards and an on-site winery, where you can delve into the traditional Georgian method of maturing grape must in kvevri, all while sipping wine and soaking up the breathtaking surrounding views.

Each room in the castle-like hotel offers sweeping vistas of the Alazan Valley. Beyond the rooms, the property features a swimming pool, jacuzzi, ample parking, and of course, expansive vineyards. The generous hosts eagerly take you on a tour of the winery, sharing insights about the kvevri, their usage, and offering a taste of locally produced wine.

Additionally, Babaneuris Marani houses a restaurant, where you can savor freshly prepared Georgian dishes, completing your comfortable and in-depth exploration of wine making in Kakheti.

Lagazi Wine Cellar

Nestled in the village of Zemo Alvani in Kakheti, the Lagazi Wine Cellar, headed by its founder Shalva, boasts an innovative approach to winemaking that breaks from tradition. Known for setting records for wine aging lengths, the processes at this winery are both impressive and intriguing. Unlike most, one of their cellars resides at ground level, merely covered by an outhouse.

Shalva, who has experimented in the tourism industry before committing to the art of winemaking, emphasizes the importance of letting the juice naturally evolve into divine wine. He adheres to natural winemaking principles, minimally interfering with the fermentation and aging processes. The local terroir, characterized by its arid climate and distinct soil mineralization, plays a crucial role in the winemaking process.

A visit to the Lagazi Wine Cellar offers more than a wine tasting opportunity; it promises an immersive dining experience around a sumptuously arranged table. If you're curious, you can even learn the art of cooking traditional Georgian cuisine. Dive into this truly captivating experience that brings you closer to the heart of Georgian winemaking.

Tears of a Pheasant Winery and Restaurant

Best Wineries In Kakheti

Situated in the vibrant city of Sighnaghi, Tears of a Pheasant Winery and Restaurant stands as a notable venue where you can savor exceptional local wines. This cherished establishment is the brainchild of American artist John Wurdeman, who was so enchanted by Georgia that he chose to make it his permanent home.

At Tears of the Pheasant, you're invited to sample a variety of Kvevri wines among others, all crafted with an unwavering commitment to natural production. From vine to bottle, the winemaking process here is untouched by chemicals, favoring an organic and eco-friendly approach. The winery primarily produces Rkatsiteli, Saperavi, and Kisi wines, but the offering doesn't end there.

The restaurant showcases an extensive array of wines sourced from across Georgia, housed in their own impressive cellar. Here, you have the opportunity to taste wines before you choose to purchase them, ensuring a selection that perfectly suits your palate.

But the restaurant's appeal extends beyond its wine selection. Committed to the same organic ethos, the chef sources fresh, local ingredients from the daily market to create authentic Georgian dishes. This commitment to pure, natural produce extends to every aspect of the establishment.

Decorated with paintings by the founder himself and works by local artists, the restaurant's ambiance is both cozy and creative. Tears of a Pheasant is undoubtedly a destination to add to your itinerary when visiting Sighnaghi, offering an immersive, authentic Georgian experience.

Shaloshvili Wine Cellar

The quaint Shaloshvili Winery, coupled with its comfortable accommodation, offers a serene retreat where days can be blissfully spent savoring local wines. Established in 2013 with the planting of the first vineyards, this venue swiftly built up a robust infrastructure for wine production and guest services. Equipped with state-of-the-art storage and bottling equipment, Shaloshvili nurtures their wines in traditional quavers or oak barrels.

The founder, Alex Shaloshvili, shares a lifelong bond with viticulture and approaches every batch of wine with expert knowledge and stringent quality control. Alongside vineyard walks and wine tastings, guests can engage in culinary masterclasses, participate in the autumn harvest, or explore the scenic valleys of Kakheti on horseback.

Winery Khareba

Best Wineries In Kakheti

As one of Kakheti's most substantial wine producers, Winery Khareba welcomes all to sample their wines and embark on a tour of their underground tunnel, currently repurposed as an exhibition hall and wine-tasting platform. A journey through this tunnel coupled with a wine tasting session awaits you.

Of note, Khareba produces an impressive range of up to 50 unique wines. The Kakheti branch typically serves Saperavi, Kindzmarauli, Rkatsiteli, and Kisi. Chacha tastings are also on offer, and each beverage is perfectly paired with light snacks such as fresh bread with butter and cheeses.

For those seeking a deeper immersion into Georgian culture, there is the option to partake in cooking masterclasses, allowing you to bring home a tangible piece of your Georgian experience.

Javakhishvili Wine Cellar

The Javakhishvili Wine Cellar, an intimate winery, is cradled amidst vine-clad fields in the heart of the Kvareli region's majestic mountains, an area renowned for its captivating panoramas. This venue boasts production and tasting rooms, a vast wine cellar, and a sumptuous restaurant where not only can you savor a delightful meal, but also host momentous occasions like weddings. Indeed, the locale is perfectly equipped for outdoor ceremonies and banquets.

Submersing you in Georgian winemaking traditions, the estate's ambiance is carefully crafted to replicate a Georgian village, with meticulous attention paid to every detail. Guests regularly laud the locally produced wine and authentic cuisine available for sampling.

But the hospitality doesn't stop at sampling; the warm-hearted hosts of the winery encourage visitors to engage in Rtveli, the traditional grape harvest, and offer lessons in preparing quintessential Georgian delicacies like khinkali, churkkhela, and traditional puri bread, all using a special tonneh oven.

As evening falls, guests can retreat to the winery's restaurant, curling up by the fireplace to revel in the tranquility and comfort that only a venue such as the Javakhishvili Wine Cellar can provide.

Dakishvili Winery

Gogi Dakishvili, or Giorgi as he is formally known, is a consummate professional, a seasoned winemaker who proudly carries on his family's tradition. Having learnt the art of viticulture and winemaking from his grandfather, he has spent a lifetime refining his skills and absorbing new insights in the field. With years of practice under his belt, honing his craft in various wineries and family vineyards, Gogi eventually took the step to open his own winery - the crowning accomplishment of his life's work.

Located in the quaint village of Shalauri, close to Telavi, you'll find the Dakishvili Winery, the heartland of the family's vineyards and wine production. The winery's produce is crafted following both European and traditional Georgian methodologies. Yet, Gogi's greatest passion unquestionably lies in the traditional Georgian method of aging wine in a kvevri, which he views as the most natural and environmentally friendly approach.

One of the winery's unique creations is "Dakishvili's Cuvee," a blend derived from three distinct grapes: Kisi (70%), Mtsvane (20%), and Rkatsiteli (10%). Furthermore, they produce wines using Saperavi and Cabernet Sauvignon, crafting up to 150,000 bottles of wine annually.

The winery boasts an impressive and aesthetically pleasing wine cellar housing operational kvevris, along with a restaurant, terrace, and expansive vineyards that extend into the horizon. To partake in a wine tour and tasting, make sure to book your visit in advance. Dakishvili Winery, a place where heritage and dedication pour into every bottle.

Twins Wine House

Boasting vast expanses of vineyards and a generous swimming pool, the highly atmospheric Twins Wine House winery was birthed from the combined efforts of twin brothers, Gela and Gia Gamtsikulashvili. This land, a precious inheritance from their father and grandfather, had been a site of wine production for generations. Their grandfather was a successful winemaker, crafting magical beverages for family and friends before the arrival of Soviet rule. Refusing to surrender his lands, house, and winery to the Soviets resulted in Firuz Gamtsikulashvili's exile to the Gulag, leaving his young son Valiko to do his best to manage the family property. The winery and the cellar lay dormant for years until the early 2000s when Gela and Gia embarked on the mission of restoring the family estate. Today, Twins Wine House stands as a stunning winery nestled amidst the scenic mountain valleys of Kakheti, in the village of Napareuli.

The estate offers everything needed for a satisfying break and an introduction to the culture of local winemaking. It comprises a 22-room hotel, a restaurant specializing in Georgian cuisine, and a certified wine museum housing artifacts from the region's winemaking past. This extensive collection alone makes a visit worthwhile. The location itself exudes a tranquillity that is truly picturesque and breathtaking. Stroll through the vineyards, enjoy a wine tasting, or savor a hearty meal of delectable Georgian cuisine. As a guest, you can take a refreshing dip in the spacious pool, basking in the sun's warmth while listening to the peaceful chorus of birdsong.

Kakheti is a diverse and expansive region of Georgia, and regardless of which winery you select for your exploration of Georgian wine culture, you are bound to be delighted. Here, you'll be greeted with warmth and love, and the secrets of creating natural and delectable wine will be enthusiastically shared. Twins Wine House: a testament to the resilient spirit of family heritage and the art of winemaking.