“Wine is like art. Armenian winemaking tradition is about the history and heritage of this
ancient country and the people who have lived here for centuries.” – Lauren Mowery
Lauren Mowery has earned accolades for her writing and photography, having contributed travel, drinks and food content to publications like Forbes, Saveur, Hemispheres, U.S. News & World Report, SCUBA Diving, Plate, Chef & Restaurant, Hotels Above Par, AAA, Fodors.com, Lonely Planet, USA Today, Men’s Journal, and Time Out.
To contribute to the recognizability of Armenia in the United States and to discover the Armenian wine potential, media representatives of the United States recently arrived in Yerevan as a result of the cooperation between the AGRI CAMP Program and Storica-Wine company, which imports Armenian wine to the US.
In order to promote the development of Armenian wine markets and increase export volumes, the AGRI CAMP Program works not only with international distributors and wine specialists, but also with outstanding international journalists covering wine and gastro topics.
In the period from September 25 to 29, 2023 the invited representative group had the opportunity to explore our country more closely, taste a wide variety of Armenian wines, as well as personally talk with the master winemakers, getting to know remarkable personal and family stories and providing the winemakers with valuable professional advice.
“Wine is a humanity. During this trip we heard many stories. Wine helps us learn about the cultures of nations,”– said Lisa Zimmerman, a wine, cocktail and food columnist who currently writes for Forbes and other leading publications.
After the Yerevan city tour, the journalists spent several days walking around the wine producing areas of Armenia: Areni Cave, Museum of Armenian Wine History, Armenian wineries and adjacent vineyards such as Voskevaz and Van Ardi, Zulal, Keush Wines, NOA, etc.
During the wine tours, the guests got acquainted with Armenian history and culture, the ancient technologies of Armenian winemaking, it’s preserved and restored traditions, the peculiarities of the Armenian terroir, endemic types of grapes, and, of course, different and multi-flavored Armenian wines.
Along with all this, in the cozy and authentic environment of Yeganyans Guest House and Wine Yard in Ashtarak, they managed to enjoy the modern culture of Armenian hospitality, get to know Armenian cuisine, discovering Armenia as a country with a strong potential for gastrotourism.
During sweet sujukh making and lavash baking master classes at the Yeganyans Wine Yard, one of the guests, Mikayla Cohen, Wine Director of the Starr Restaurants, admitted that her mother and grandmother are Armenians and that she always dreamed of coming to Armenia. It was touching to see how she carefully wrapped a piece of the lavash baked by her own hands to take it to the USA and give it to her mother, who always misses her homeland.
On the final day of the visit AGRI CAMP and Storica-Wine organized traditional wine tasting event, presenting USAID beneficiary companies that make wine from rare types of grapes, such as red juice, muscat, pomegranate, and khndoghni. So, the guests had the opportunity to taste MOONQ, Tushpa, Old Bridge, Aparteni, Hovaz and Jraghatspanyan wines.
Discussions with leading wine experts during the event were extremely important and useful.
J’nai Gaither, a writer and reporter for Decanter magazine, who helps to discover the wines of lesser-known countries, specifically mentioned: “The US is the most difficult market and it takes time to get there. Price is not important. But the stories about the families and people who are making wines this is what really touching and makes to promote the wine. Keep telling the story.”