YEREVAN, October 3. /ARKA /. The fifth traditional wine festival in the village of Areni in the southern Vayots Dzor province will be held October 4-6 and is expected to attract around 10,000 people, Mekhak Apresian, head of an economy ministry’s department dealing with tourism and regional development, said today adding also that this year’s festival is to promote tourism development of the region.
The first Areni wine festival was held in 2004 by USDA and Tufenkian Hospitality with the aim to present the ancient Armenian tradition of winemaking.
This year the festival will extend also to two neighboring villages of Rind and Yeghegnadzor. Some 12 local wineries and 40 wine making households will showcase their products.
Apart from being a showcase for great wine, the festival is a major event for traditional food making and tasting. The event program includes traditional dancing, singing, food-making and tasting, wine-making and tasting, traditional games, contests and so on. Villagers will sell home-made products- cream, honey, nuts and walnuts, vegetables, fruits, dried fruits, baked goods, Armenian flat bread lavash, home-made jams and jellies, herbal teas and many other products a typical Armenian household usually prepares for its members.
Tourists from Russia, Georgia and Italy and invited winemakers form France and Portugal will travel to Areni. Special buses will take all those wishing to attend the festival from Republican Square in Yerevan. The buses will set out at 10 am and return at 5 pm.
The festival is organized by Areni Wine Festival Fund with the support of economy ministry and the Fund for Industry Development together with Vayots Dzor regional administration.
Armenia is the world's earliest known wine-making center. A wine press and fermentation jars from about 6,000 years ago were found in a cave in Vayots Dzor region. A team of local and international archeologists also found grape seeds, the remains of pressed grapes and dozens of dried vines. The facility was uncovered in the same area that was the site of the discovery of the oldest known leather shoe, dated to about 5,500 years ago. -0-