Friday, May 11, 2007

Mtsvane Grapes

Mtsvane grapes are grown in several areas of Kakheti, including Signagi (pictured), and Kvareli.

These grapes are used in a variety of Georgian white wines. The vines, though susceptible to drought, are resistant to frost and are characterized by medium-size yellow-green grapes with bronze spots; they have a thin skin and juicy pulp. (The name Mtsvane in Georgian means "new, young, green.") The leaves have five lobes and are more rounded than many.

Mtsvane grapes can be used to produce Manavi or Mtsvane dry table wine. These grapes are often blended with Rkatsiteli to make Tsinandali, Vazisubani or Gurdzhaani wine, since to it adds a fruity, aromatic balance. In addition, Mtsvane grapes are blended with Rkatsiteli and Khikhvi to make high quality Rkatsiteli Khornabudjuli wine or the fortified Anaga.

1 comment:

David said...

Many people are surprised to learn that the third most planted grape in terms of hectare grown is the ancient vinifera, Rkatsiteli. Thought to have originated in the Caucasus Mountains bordering Armenia and Turkey, this grape is popular in the former USSR countries of Georgia, Azerbaijan, Moldavia, Ukraine as well as Bulgaria and Rumania. Wine historians believe that this varietal was growing in Georgia over 5,000 years ago and Georgia’s most famous wine is Tsinandali, a blend of Rkatsiteli and Mtsvane grapes. One manufacturer, Vaziani, has been producing this wine since 1886.