“Georgia is the only country in the world where winemaking methods that were developed up to 8,000 years ago have not only never been abandoned but remain in many ways best practice.”
Georgian wines have low presence in the LATAM and US market, but the volumes sold seem to be limited and the areas where they can be found, even more so.
The WVINE CELLARS.COM concept will implement a viable strategy through a well-balanced portfolio of Prime Wines selection from Georgia that would represent the high quality of the Georgia wines, as it would drastically expand the markets where the wine can be offered. We will try to use a streamlined direct relation “winery x consumer” avoiding unnecessary mark ups that are pertinent to the 3-tier system (winery > importer > distributor > consumer), and makes the wine more attractive financially by being able to provide a significant price reduction.
One particularly important part of the strategy is to select the best wine style the new consumers will be interested in buying. The very traditional, flavorful (but sometimes unpalatable) Qvevri wines that have, a strong pull from the “natural wine movement” ;
or what is called “European style”, a much more appealing type of wine to the LATAM and US palate? Regardless of personal tasting preferences, it would be hard to argue that the correct answer is “both”. The more traditional Qvevri wines have an appeal on some segments of the market, but it’s unquestionable that a more accessible style should also be made available to less acquired tastes. The good news is that some of the wineries in Georgia can offer both styles with good quality.
Overall, The WVINE CELLARS.COM concept will aggressively market the selected portfolio of Prime wines both in LATAM and USA. We are well aware that for a small country, Georgia, at the moment cannot hope to compete quantity-wise with countries such as former New World newcomers like Chile or Australia. However, we feel that Georgian wine industry have a lot to offer on the global market; We will try to carefully position Prime Georgia wines at mid-tier pricing, both to indicate quality and to manage quantity expectations.
Three styles of wine
So what are the wines like in Georgia ? As we explored, we found three distinctly different styles of winemaking. The first and newest—and smallest percentage—is Western-style production of both white and red wines: dry, and vinified in small, modern stainless-steel vats, and sometimes finished in oak barrels.
The second is traditional winemaking in the sense of Soviet-era and earlier winemaking. There are whites of varying quality and sweetness. As I understand it, more red wine in this style is exported. And most of these exported reds are slightly sweet—a style that is in great demand even today in the former Soviet satellite and Baltic countries, where Georgian wines still retain their top reputation.
The third style is an ancient one: wines made in large, clay amphora-shaped vessels that in Georgia are called qvevri (also spelled kvevri). As you may know, amphora-made wines are currently undergoing a revival by a small number of intrigued winemakers around the world. Georgia’s winemaking method differs from amphora production in that amphoras sit above ground, while qvevris are buried in the ground, so the Georgian wines can be vinified as well