Each region in Georgia has its own unique twist on cheese, ranging from the iconic sulguni to crumbly ‘factory cheese’ (karkhnuli) to exotic smoked cheeses perfect to pair with dried fruits and wine.
While it is certainly possible to find good quality Georgian cheese wherever you go, true connoisseurs of cheese will love the annual Cheese Festival held in Tbilisi each summer.
This celebration of all things cheese gives you the opportunity to try all fourteen of Georgia’s (Country) most famous regional cheeses in one place, including:
· Aged and preserved Dambalkhacho from Pshavi,
· Spicy Tushetian Chogi made from sheep milk,
· Soft Kalti, perfect for pairing with local beer,
· Kobi from Khevi,
· Stringy Ajarian and Meskhetian Chechili,
· Versatile and delicious Sulguni, including unique varieties from Samegrelo and Svaneti,
· Various regional Guda varieties including Tushetian Guda,
· Salty, crumbly Karkhnuli cheese,
· Soft and stringy Meskhetian Tenili,
· Rich and creamy Imeruli cheese.
These last three varieties of cheese are so unique that they are on the UNESCO List of Objects of Intangible Cultural Heritage.
In addition to Georgia’s most recognizable cheeses, you’ll also find lesser-known treasures including Muchli, Chlechili, Narchvi, honey or wine-ripened cheeses, smoked cheeses, and even cheeses prepared using chacha.
It’s not all about eating at the cheese festival, of course! You can also learn more about how each of these cheeses is made, purchase cheeses to take home with you, and sample these cheeses alongside other iconic dishes of Georgian cuisine.
So, loosen your belt and prepare your taste buds! You’re in for a treat!