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The Kisi Grape


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About Kisi

(Synonyms: Kissi, Maghranuli.)

Background

Map showing modern-day Georgia.

Kisi is a white-wine grape originating in Kakheti, a region in the southeast of what is now the Republic of Georgia. It is a rather good wine, but so little known that even Wikipedia and Wine Searcher have no pages for it.

Nowadays, Kisi wines are made in two distinct styles: traditional, which involves fermentation in qvevri, and modern, following standard European winemaking methods. Either way, Kisi wines show floral aromas and flavors of tree fruit (apples and pears), often so intense that the wines, though quite dry, seem off-dry. Traditionally vinified Kisi wines tend to show further complex flavors, notably apricot, orange, and even mint.

(Note that in the “Descriptions” below, many refer to particular Kisi wines, owing to the scarcity of published material dealing with Kisi wines in general.)

All in all, it looks like Kisis is quite a little gem of a wine, and as yet almost wholy undiscovered in the U.S.

Factoid: Kisi .

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Some Descriptions of Kisi Wines

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Some Kisis to Try

(About this list.)

Despite Kisi wines being so little known, there are a few specimens in the U.S. market; we found the ones below meeting our price/availability criteria (well, we had to stretch the “availability” a bit, but they are findable).

From the various reviews, it looks as if you would be well advised to try any Kisi wine you can find at retail. The qvevri-fermented ones will usually say “amber” or “orange” somewhere on the label. If you are lucky enough to have a choice, those are probably to be preferred to any “modern/European” styled Kisi wines.


Schuchmann “Vinoterra” Kisi
(Qvevri-fermented.)

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Tasting Notes” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks



Pheasant’s Tears “Amber” Kisi
(Qvevri-fermented.)

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Tasting Notes” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks

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For a Splurge

We could find no reasonably available Kisi wines better enough than those listed above as to justify a “splurge” price.

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This page was last modified on Saturday, 11 April 2020, at 5:30 pm Pacific Time.