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Traveling the Wine Roads of the Racha-Lechkhumi Region

We spent the 11th day in Georgia (Sakartvelo) visiting three wineries in the Racha-Lechkhumi region of Georgia. Two of the wineries were very small production wineries. While on the roads, we compared what we experienced in Racha-Lechkhumi to what we experienced on the roads of Kakheti. In comparison, Kakheti is flatter and Racha-Lechkhumi is mountainous. We observed many grapes transported to wineries in Kakheti. We did not observe this in Racha-Lechkhumi.

There were very few fences in Kakheti while in Racha-Lechkhumi there were many more fences. This did not deter animals from freely roaming the roads. In both wine regions expect to see cows, horses and chickens sharing the roads. We also observed pigs on the roads of Racha-Lechkhumi. In the Racha-Lechkhumi region you will have to drive up and down mountain sides. Some roads are flat and paved. The roads leading to the wineries were often adventurous.

We thought that our experience driving on gravel roads on a side of a mountain in Virginia would help us on our trek to wineries in Georgia. It didn’t. Often there was a sign pointing in the direction of a winery. Then the road turns into gravel. Then you experience potholes. Those turn into ruts and eventually into deep ditches. It is often a very bumpy ride. Our driver navigated the roads like a slalom skier down a snow covered mountainous course.

The views from the bottom of the mountains were majestic. The views from the mountain heights were also impressive. On the slops of some hillsides, we saw vineyards. Like a patchwork quilt, some of the vineyards were blue, evidence of spraying copper sulfate to protect from mildew. The site of vineyards on hillsides is august and memorable.

We encourage you to travel to Georgia and experience 8,000 years of vineyards and winemaking. Consider hiring a wine tour operator. If you design your own itinerary, you might want to hire a driver.


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