Ancient wine cellar transformed into national museum

Marany wine cellar in Georgia. A place where Georgian's expires grapes, produced wine and stored here., 10 Oct 2014 - 13:14, Tbilisi,Georgia

An ancient wine cellar constructed almost in half a century ago is being transformed into place where Georgian wine can be treasured and celebrated.

Head of the Georgian Government Irakli Garibashvili visited the wine cellar that would soon be transformed into Georgia’s National Wine Agency and Museum of Wine. He assessed the construction work and introduced the concept of the new building to others.

The new facility was formerly an ancient wine cellar that was built in 1962 when the world congress of wine was held in Georgia.

The wine cellar housed a diverse range of Georgian wine varieties. Officials said there were about 25,000 bottles of wine of various types, including one which was 107 years old.

Once the renovation has taken place, a large museum space will occupy the basement floor. Furthermore, inside the National Wine Agency will be professional development center, small and large conference halls, a cellar, a tasting hall and wine laboratory.

On the second floor, a wine education centre with a computer class, cabinets and library will be located.

Georgia is recognized as one of the oldest wine regions in 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 production over 8,000 years ago.

The traditional Georgian style of winemaking using qvevri clay jars was listed on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage lists.

Georgia ranked second in grape production in the former Soviet Union behind Moldova, and Georgian wines have always been the most highly prized and sought after in the Soviet space.