Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, or "Vinny" for short. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the technical aspects of winemaking to the fine points of etiquette. I hope you find my answers educational and even amusing. Looking for a particular answer? Check my archive and my FAQs.
Dear Dr. Vinny,
I have a bottle of red wine a client gave to me, supposedly given to those traveling with President Bush on a recent trip to Russia. "Saperavi" is the only English on the label. Everything else is ... Russian? Can you help me find out what I have?
—Chris A., Manassas, Va.
Well, I can't vouch for the story about the President, but Saperavi is indeed the name of a grape from the Republic of Georgia that is able to survive the cold Russian winters. This hearty grape is often used in blending, adding acidity and color to wines, although you can also find it bottled solo, as you see here.
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