Atenis Saperavi Grape Variety

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The first references of winemaking in Georgia date back to 6000-5000 BC thus it is believed that Georgia is one of the oldest winemaking countries. One of the grape varieties present in this region is Atenis Saperavi. It was named due to its resemblance to Kakhuri Saperavi. Historically, Atenis Saperavi has been popular in the Ateni village and Ateni valley. The variety has adapted to the local environment. In the soviet period, the state economy was focused on mass production. Because of that fact, in the village Ateni the local population cultivated different varieties of vine, which resulted in an abundant harvest. Because of that fact, the local variety is today at risk of disappearing. Today Atenis Saperavi is preserved only in one farmer’s plot, with a small population (200 plant), vine 3 years old.

The Atenis Saperavi is a grape variety with small-sized bunches and black violet-colour tinge ovate shaped berries. Its pulp is said to be juicy and flesh. The leaves are around 14-17 cm long and 20-25 wide. The variety is moderately resistant to Plasmopara viticola and to Erysiphe necator. High quality dry red wine, grape juice (molasses) and traditional Georgia "Chacha” is made from the grapes.

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Nominated by:Tamaz Dundua