Khikhvi: impossible to say, impossible not to love

by  |  15-03-2019

When in Georgia researching the book, there were a handful of words I learned immediately: “hello” (gamarjoba), “yes” (ki/kho), “no” (ara), and “thank you” (madloba). “Cheers” (gaumarjos) arrived quickly out of necessity but it was followed by peculiar grape name, Khikhvi. How on earth do you say this name, Khikhvi…? Well, the ‘kh’ is a very hard ‘h’ like the Spanish ‘j’, and the ‘v’ becomes a ‘w’ so it’s like ‘HEE-kwee’ although that’s only somewhat close and in case you haven’t already surmised, this is no ‘Merlot’ nor ‘Syrah’ in terms of being easy to pronounce for the English speaker. So why am I bothering to mention it? Simply because it’s one of Georgia’s best white grapes. Yes, you may have heard of Rkatsiteli or the Mtsvanes or even Kisi but in my mind, Khikhvi is a truly unsung hero of this Caucasus nation. Unbeknownst to me, it was […]
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