Georgia’s geographical location with borders to the Black Sea, the modern Russian Federation, Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan, has been, through pre-history and history, a crossroads between the West and the East.
Due to its location, the country has been invaded several times in the course of history, by, for example, the Greeks, Persians, and the Ottomans, to name but a few. The invasions means that much of the antique and Islamic worldview still exists at the country’s borders—which is a unique cultural situation. The invasions have also left their footprints on Georgia’s food- and drinking traditions and habits. This has resulted in the existence of many different gastronomical and culinary branches in the foodways of Georgia today. Apart from the invasions, Georgia is one of the earliest Christian countries in the world, which affords wine a certain role in the transition from pre-history into the Christian era. Wine holds a very special place in the hearts and minds of the Georgian people.
My research on Georgia’s food and drinking traditions and habits, are still in its infancy, and I propose a paper for the conference that will give a glimpse of the different regional food and drinking traditions and their origins. The research is interdisciplinary as it is based on archaeological artifacts, historical sources, photographical documentation, and oral sources.