Georgia is the oldest wine producing region of the world. The fertile valleys of the South Caucasus, which Georgia straddles, are believed by many archaeologists to be the source of the world`s first cultivated grapevines and Neolithic wine producti on, over 7000 years ago. Scientists have discovered the world"s oldest wine - a vintage produced 8,000 years ago. The find pushes back the history of wine by several hundred years. New discoveries show how Neolithic man was busy making red wine in Shulaveri (modern Georgia). Although no liquid wine from the period has survived, scientists have now found and tested wine residues discovered on the inner surfaces of 8,000-year-old ceramic storage jars.
Biochemical tests on the ancient pottery wine jars from Georgia are showing that at this early period humans were deliberately adding anti-bacterial preservatives to grape juice so that the resulting wine could be kept for longer periods after fermentation. Due to the many millennia of wine in Georgian history, the traditions of its viticulture are entwined and inseparable with the country`s national identity.
It has been archeologically proven that the roots of Georgian viticulture are between 7000 and 5000 BC, when peoples of South Caucasus discovered that wild grape juice turned into wine when it was left buried through the winter in a shallow pit. This knowledge was nourished by experience, and from 4000 BC Georgians were cultivating grapes and burying clay vessels, Kvevri, in which to store their wine ready for serving at perfect ground temperature. When filled with the fermented juice of the harvest, the Kvevris are topped with a wooden lid and then covered and sealed with Earth. Some may remain entombed for up to 50 years. So, all evidence points out that the wine was born in Georgia.