Ukraine Presents “God’s Drink” to the World as the First Wine Festival Takes Place in Kyiv
Kyiv, November 10, 2011. Over 50 companies specializing in the mastery of wine making just finished presenting their wines at the First Wine Festival that took place in one of the Kyiv’s 1,000 square meters pavilions. A spectacular show of mime artists from France, a variety of cultural music performances and, of course, a variety of wines from all around the world, brought together a countless amount of wine loving individuals for a tasting surprise.
Along with the wine tasting, the festival participants were able to attend numerous wine art and master classes as well as received tips on how to choose wines for a meal, and what was the best way to drink wine. The goal of the Wine Fest, according to its organizers, was to present new standards of wine consuming culture in Ukraine, while taking into account the professional experience of Europe’s most prominent wine producers.
Winemaking traditions in Ukraine had been a large part of Ukrainian culture since the 4th century B.C.; long before France became the world’s renowned winery. Nowadays, Ukraine’s wine production is going through the process of rejuvenation. “The culture of wine consumption in Ukraine is developing right now. Thanks to the existence of foreign wines in Ukraine’s markets, which makes national winemakers to experiment with international techniques of winemaking – gives us very good quality product that can compete with the European wine,” said Genadiy Dovgan, Marketing Director of Inkerman Group.
International experts who were attending the festival also recognized Ukraine’s potential. “It was very interesting to see Ukrainian wine industry having a vision of its own future. Because the wine is there, the knowledge is there, the history is there… everything is there. It just needs to be put together in a better way,” said Jean-Christophe Varron, wine preserving expert with Vinea Forets et Aromes du Monde. Mr. Varron’s company teaches winemakers make better decisions while selecting quality wood barrels for better wine preservation. He believes that there is no universal recipe when it comes to wine preserving. “Wine is like a human being. It has its own character. You can have a costume that fits you very well but it doesn’t fit with your personality at all. Sometimes you need something more playful or stricter. So, the wood that we use for wine is something like that,” said Varron.
The festival featured Ukrainian and European winemakers enthusiastically showcasing their concoctions to local consumers. The attending experts agreed that vigorous competition should stimulate Ukrainian winemakers to improve their goods and follow high European standards of wine production. Rainer Oldenburg, International Regional Director for Spanish wine company Barbadillo, suggested that in order to make Ukrainian wineries better known internationally they should commit themselves to certain quality standards and focus on promoting wine from all regions. And when it comes to the price, Ukrainian winemakers should not try make a lot of money very fast, explains Oldenburg.
With room for improvement, the first Wine Festival in Kyiv has demonstrated high demand and remarkable interest for Ukrainian wines. Through the perseverance of the local wineries to preserve an original taste Ukraine may continue its wine market expansion; and that’s enough reason to drink-up to the good things.