Going on holiday to Georgia? Great! Whatever season and whatever place you choose you will get plenty of new and unforgettable impressions. At the end of the tour, you will surely go for buying national souvenirs and products to please your friends and relatives. In this article, we will try to help you create a shopping list and not to miss anything!
Georgia is one of the oldest countries in the world for wine production. According to historical data, the winemaking traditions here are about 8000 years old! At this period of time wine in Georgia is produced both by the usual European technologies and by the ancient Georgian ones. The last ones involve wine fermentation along with seeds and twigs in special huge clay jugs – kveri. Such kind of wine turns to be very bright and saturated.
The center of winemaking in Georgia is an amazing region of Kakheti. It is exactly here where you can find delicious homemade wine which is sold by locals. If you won’t have an opportunity to go for homemade wine search you can visit supermarkets or brand stores. The followings brands are of a great popularity in the country “Tsinandali”, “Akhasheni”, “Kindzmarauli” and others.
In Georgia, the national cheese is delicious and has lots of different varieties. The only thing is that not all sorts will be suitable for transportation – it depends on the package kind and shelf life. You should definitely try the classic suluguni and imeruli cheese. In Tbilisi, you can visit the shops “Aristaeus» on Pushkin Street and «Cheese House” on the 20-A Alexander Kazbegi Street. Here you will find an incredible variety of cheeses. Local markets will also delight their visitors with different village cheeses. You can also go to the region of Javakheti and visit the village of Foca, where is located the monastery of St. Nino. A little less than ten years ago, after studying the various technologies of cheese production, as well as making various experiments the monastery invented a unique type of cheese with a European slant, which has no analogs anywhere else. At this time the nuns sell 16 varieties of cheese.
The most Georgian dishes have completely unique taste and aroma. And all these thanks to the variety of national condiments and spices. They can be purchased at almost any store, supermarket and market. The best thing is of course to visit a real Georgian market – the choice here is great and the reigning atmosphere add a special mood to shopping. In the first place, we recommend buying svan salt which got its name from the mountain region of Svaneti. The salt here is mixed with some dry herbs and turns into very tasty seasoning. In second place is well-known spice – khmeli-suneli, which includes a large amount of dried and finely ground herbs.
Among the sauces, we should note satsebeli prepared on the basis of nuts and fruit juice, tkemali prepared of sour plums and spicy paste adjika.
Georgian sweets are not just delicious, but also very healthy! For example, the traditional churchkhela is made from grape juice and nuts. It turns into appetizing sweet «sausage» which is an ideal snack. They can be easily transported and can be stored for a long time. Probably one of the best shops in Tbilisi where is sold the best churchkhela is Badagi located near Rustaveli metro station.
Another healthy sweet dish is sour lavash or tklapi. These thin layers are prepared of natural fruit puree (generally plums, apricots, apples).
Beloved by everyone kozinaki has Georgian origin and the most delicious is, of course, in Georgia. Traditionally these plates with walnuts and honey are served for New Year’s table. But in stores, they can be bought at all times.
Is it possible to imagine the Georgian horseman without a dagger? Of course not. The parents of newborn boys always hang a dagger over the cradle so that their boys become real dzhigits from the first days of their life. In Georgia, you can find a lot of beautiful souvenir copies of this weapon. For transportation, it should be just declared.
Papakha or svan hat
The traditional Caucasian hat-papakha is mostly associated with Georgia. It is a universal shepherd’s hat made of sheepskin: it protects from the cold, from the sun and rain. Nowdays these hats are seldom used, however tourists can buy them as a souvenir.
Another well-known attribute of the Georgian national clothes is a svan hat. It was worn by the inhabitants of Svaneti region. In the conditions of harsh mountain climate, it protected mountaineers from the heat and cold. From it they could even drink water during the way. Initially, it slightly differed from what you might see today.
Minankari is an incredibly beautiful Georgian jewelry made of cloisonne. It is made by old technology, which is already more than twelve centuries old by repeatedly applying the enamel on silver. At the end, the jewelry is put in a special oven. Since minankari is handmade, the price for one decoration starts with $ 11-12. You can buy minankari in the store Ornament Gallery or Pokany Gallery in Tbilisi on Bambis Riga Street. Not far from the Temple of Zion are located no less popular stores Gallery 27 and Nima Gallery.