Food Fare: Georgian Faves
Is there anything worse than writing about our favorite Georgian foods and not having them in front of us to eat? Culinary torture!
More photos and info about our favorite Georgian dishes:Enjoy our visual guide to 10 of our favorite Georgian treats with with our free, full-color PDF.
Here’s a sampler of MIR staffers’ favorite Georgian foods:
- Khachapuri is the iconic Georgian favorite of melted-cheese-stuffed bread that looks like pizza without the tomato sauce. Inflation is measured by how much it costs to make this national staple.
- Khinkali are spicy meat, potato, or cheese bundles of hand-rolled dumplings. But don’t eat their tops – Georgian tradition says you must leave them on your plate so everyone knows how many you polished off.
- Ajaran khachapuri is a specialty of the seaside town of Batumi. This khachapuri is shaped like a Viking boat: a warm, soft homemade bread vessel packed with cheese and dotted with butter and an egg or two.
- Satsivi means “cold dish” in Georgian. In this case, it’s typically chicken smothered in crushed walnut sauce spiked with spices.
- Badrijani nigzit are eggplant slices rolled around walnut stuffing.
- Lobio is a flavorful and thick slow-cooked vegetarian bean dish. It’s one of many vegetarian options we love among this country’s vast offerings. Vegetarians will rejoice at the choices available in Georgia’s cuisine.
- Chacha is a home-made grape-based brandy. Potent, too. Try 35-60% alcohol.
- Borjomi mineral water is a must-try, believed to have curative powers.
- Tsinandali dry white wine, its heritage paralleling that of Georgia’s oldest winery, founded by poet Alexander Chavchavadze.
- Pheasant’s Tears wines, organic wines that are so tasty they make “pheasants cry tears of joy.”
- Ajapsandali is an eggplant stew simmered with potatoes, tomatoes, and garlic. Variations abound.
- Tusheti sheep cheese is a type of salty gouda made in the mountains of northeastern Georgia, and renowned throughout Europe for its high quality.
- Churchkhela are long strings of walnut candies shaped like sausages or candles. They’re made with strings of walnuts dipped into grape juice thickened with flour.
Travel to Georgia with MIR
We’re always adding to the list, so tell us your favorite foods and drinks in Georgia. You can sample many of these foods, wines and more on MIR’s tours to Georgia, including these small group tours:
- A Taste of Georgia: Wine, Cuisine & Culture
- Treasures of the South Caucasus
- Village Traditions of the South Caucasus
You can also opt to travel on your dates and at your pace on MIR’s private independent trip, Essential Georgia, or on a handcrafted private journey of Georgia, customized to your desired dates and style.
(Top photo credit: A Georgian Table, in Georgia. Photo: Douglas Grimes)
PUBLISHED: September 11, 2014