What is saperavi?

A. A colloquial Sicilian term for the powerful flavor of a wine that’s high in alcohol

B. An Italian method of post fermentation maceration intended to increase color saturation in a wine and amplify a wine’s body

C. An ancient leading grape variety in the Republic of Georgia

D. The process by which proteins in human saliva bind with various molecules including tannin, creating the impression of dryness in the mouth


The Alazani Valley (pronounced: al a ZAH knee) of Georgia, on the edge of the Caucasus Mountains, considers itself the “cradle of wine.” Archeological evidence suggests that wine has been made here for more than seven millennia. The valley’s specialty is saperavi, a dark skinned red variety. Saperavi, like dozens of other grape varieties that grow in Georgia, is often still fermented in large subterranean earthenware pots called qvevri (ke VEV ree).

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