Blog / Peculiarities of Georgian Cuisine Georgia, Culinary Art, Blog | 23.04.2018

Peculiarities of Georgian Cuisine

While visiting Georgia, one of the attractions that you must definitely see  and to be more precise taste  is the Georgian cuisine. The Georgian traditional kitchen is one of the richest and oldest in the world and is distinguished with great variety. Depending on the climatic and geographical conditions, it differs from region to region in Georgia.
When we are talking about the Georgian cuisine, it is noteworthy, that the preparation of Georgian dishes is not that easy. Besides, the tradition of the famous Georgian hospitality is also close to the kitchen, the Georgian feast and the rules of the toastmaster as well. Before sharing the description of the Georgian cuisine, I would like to tell you about the delicious Georgian feast and various dishes counting thousands of recipes. The cooking and taste of these dishes varies based on Georgia's regional location and ethnographic character.

Meat and wine in the east, nuts and vegetables in the west

For example, Georgian dishes in Eastern Georgia (in the Mtskheta-Mtianeti, Kakheti, Khevsureti) are noticieble with meat, wine, bread and oily food. While in Western Georgia (Guria, Adjara, Samegrelo) there are dishes rich with nuts, vegetables, veggie salads and dairy products. The dishes you must definitely taste in Georgia: If you happen  to be travelling to the western side of Georgia, namely Samegrelo, you must taste Megrelian cheese «Sulguni»; «Gomi» – a thick porridge of maize, very tasty with cheese; «Elarji» this is the variety of Gomi with hammered Sulguni cheese inside. «Gebjalia with mint», compounded cheese roulette which is very tasty with Gomi and as well as a separate dish itself, and of course the famous «Megrelian Khachapuri».

One Khachapuri for each region

Right here in the west, if you find yourself in Guria or Imereti, you should definitely taste Imeruli cheese, which locals call  «Chkinti Kveli». Imeretian Khachapuri, which differs from the Megrelian by its preparation process and ingrediants. The distinguished dish of the same region is «Mchadi» and the veggie salads. Adjara, besides from spring resort locations, is unique with its local traditional cuisine, there are many types of dishes that you should taste only in this region. Among them «Adjarian Khachapuri», which is shaped as a boat, ingredients are: cheese, butter and egg. «Borano» is one of the caloric dishes, prepared with melted butter and cheese. «Kaimagi», is more characteristic for the high mountainous villages, prepared with milk. «Achma» belongs to the variety of Khachapuri and is made from boiled thin layers of dough occasionally topped with cheese and butter. «Sinori» is a mix of Nadugi, Matsoni (Georgian yogurt) and milk, and of course Adjarian «paited cheese».
In case you are travelling in the east and highland regions, besides the beautiful nature and eco-tourism, it has rich cultural values, including the cuisine. The most so-called Georgian dish «Khinkali» is based from this part, namely from Tusheti. Also «Godila», «Kagi», «Contori», «Gouda Cheese».

From Javakheti to Kakheti

The famed dishes of Samtskhe-Javakheti are «Apokhti» salted and dried meat and «Tatarbek», thinly sliced cooked dough pieces eaten with melted butter. In the highest Georgian region Svaneti, «Svanuri Sulguni» is traditional, Chvishtari which is prepared with a mix of a maize flour and Sulguni, «Keria and Kubdari», with a meat sautéed in a bread dough, «Tashmibadji», potato puree in cheese, it is noteworthy to mark separately  the Svanic Salt  and the spices spiced with various plant fragrances. «Georgia is the country of wine», you have probably heard and read a lot about this, and of course, its heart is Kakheti. Kakheti is one of the most beautiful places, it is the homeland of wine. But in addition to the viticulture and wine culture, it is distinguished with rich dishes. This part of Georgia is famous for its meaty dishes, including: «Mtsvadi» pork, calf or lamb meat cooked on the skewer, Kakhetian «Khinkali», «Khashlama», «Tonis Puri» and Georgian sweets «Churchkhela» and «Pelamushi», made from grape juice. So, as you can see, the abundance of the dishes and the ingredients is so rich that it is impossible to taste everything in one day.

The unwritten rules of Georgian hospitality

If you are travelling to Georgia and you have the opportunity to get into a Georgian family at the Georgian feast, you should know the unwritten rules of Georgian hospitality. Once in the Georgian family, you won’t leave hungry. The rule here is that «the guest is sent from God» meaning, that the guest is highly respected, it is believed that he/she is sent from God and of course is hosted with a feast. As I have mentioned above, Georgia is the country of wine, here, they love wine making as much as drinking it. While at the feast you should definitely drink the cup of wine handed by the host, and if you empty the cup, thus, you show your respect to the host. You should not be modest and refuse the meal. The scent of each dish offered is stunning, and you become so charged with the positive vibes of the environment, that you don’t want to leave.
Author: MyCaucasus