A Historic Wine Region
Six Thousand Years of Wine
4100 BC: Areni-1 cave site of the world’s oldest known winery, discovered in 2007
Early years, pre 1920: stable and growing horticulture environment
Soviet Era, 1920-1991: innovation at a standstill; historic varieties uncultivated
New dawn, 1992 to present: international interest piqued. Investment in DNA technologies to identify grapes from old monasteries and villages. Creation of “historic world” designation, separate from new world and old world wines. Includes: Armenia, Georgia, Israel, Jordan, and Lebanon
A Sense of Place in the VAYOTS DZOR
After touring several of Armenia’s wine growing regions in 2005, Paul and the Yacoubians settled on the Vayots Dzor province to begin their exploration.
With vineyards at elevations exceeding 5,000 feet, this mountainous region is one of Armenia’s most sparsely populated, and is home to only about 10% of the country’s vineyards. It is also home to the Areni-1 cave, site of the world’s oldest known proto-winery, dated to 4,100 BC.
Here in the mountainous Vayots Dzor, extremely rocky soils of volcanic origin and limestone, and an extended growing season provide unique terroir for indigenous varieties such as the country’s emblematic red grape: areni.