By Diane Letulle, Wine Travel Examiner
The Republic of Georgia is a somewhat off-the-beaten path travel destination, but for intrepid souls who venture forth to this mountainous land there is much to love. The country boasts a rich culture of folk music and dance and delicious, hearty cuisine.
And Georgia, nestled between the Black Sea to the west and the Caucasus Mountains to the north and east, is recognized as have the world’s oldest winemaking tradition.
Wine lovers who journey here can visit and stay at a new winery that provides a heady mix of softly rolling landscape, comfortable hotel rooms, elegant restaurant, and a beautiful winemaking facility to explore.
Schuchmann Wines Chateau has a welcoming, English-speaking staff and an espresso machine on premises. According to Burkhard Schuchmann, “It was the first thing I had installed.” After a demitasse of freshly made espresso, travelers can enjoy a winery tour.A native of Germany, Mr. Schuchmann was a former railroad executive who dreamed of a very different kind of retirement – owning a winery in Georgia. When I met Mr. Schuchmann, he was as enthusiastic as a kid in a candy store as he bade me welcome to his place. And if you encounter him on your visit, you will recognize him by his bright blue eyes, wide smile, and exceptionally friendly greeting.
Schuchmann wines range in style from modern to ancient. The old-style wines are made in traditional Qvevri, which are clay amphorae that are filled with pressed grape juice as well as the whole bunches of skins and stems. The entire batch is covered for a number of months and ferments under ground. Then the solids (skins and stems) are removed. The final wine often include spicy notes such as clove and cinnamon as well as heavy tannins. You will also enjoy the winery’s modern style wines made from traditional Georgian grapes such as Saperavi and Rkatsitelli.
Slideshow: Schuchmann Wines Chateau offers tourists a top destination in Georgia
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Republic of Georgia
For information, visit the Schuchmann Wines Chateau website