NIKALAS MARANI – Kakheti, Georgia

Label design by Nika Bakhia

Zurab Mgvdliashvili established a small marani in his familial village of Kardenakhi on the right bank of the Alazani in the Kakheti Valley as an homage to his grandfather Nikalas. Buying up small plots of vines in prime vineyards he now has enough vines to dedicate himself entirely to wine making. Originally Zurab set out to make wine only for for himself and friends thankfully he has continued with this same spirit. He plans to only grow to the point where he can control everything otherwise the wines will cease to be his.

Budeshuri is the clone of Saperavi Zurab farms and what he has named this particular bottling after. A light, peppery, delight of a red from a vineyard famous for much heavier wines. We like to open it up and throw it in an ice bucket because it is also good with a slight chill.

Technically a rose, only one 1500 liter qvevri of this wines was made. The fruit was destemmed and crushed directly into qvevri without skin contact. After aging for 6 months Zurab opened the qvevri to sample the wine and between he an a few friends they quickly drank 5 liters. Lacking more of the same wine to top the qvevri up before resealing it he used a classical saperavi from the same vineyard and less than a 10th of a percent of red wine turned what would have otherwise been a dark rose red.