Qvevri Basics

    June 16, 2020

    Ever wondered how Qvevri is being created? We give you a brief overview about this ancient craft

    Daria Kholodilina

    Building a Qvevri, a traditional Georgian winemaking vessel, is not an easy process at all. While our tech friends are developing and testing the ways to create it with 3D printing technologies, the old craft is being practiced only by several families.

    Of course, the best way to understand it is to visit a workshop of a Qvevri maker. We will try to explain it to you via simple numbers though.

    Qvevri maker at work

    • A volume of an average Qvevri is from 500 to 2000 liters
    • 10 cm - so tall is the layer of clay added to the base of Qvevri once every 2-3 days
    • 1000 C is the minimal optimal temperature of the fire during firing. The fire should burn 24/7, so there is always somebody that keeps an eye on it.
    • 6-7 days is an average duration of firing Qvevris
    • 3 months - so much time it takes to build around eight 1000 liters big Qvevris (simultaneously)
    • 7-8 months lasts the season of Qvevri building. Yes, it is also a seasonal, weather-dependent occupation

      Taking a Qvevri from the workshop

    See, how labour consuming and unique this traditional vessel is? Find an opportunity to taste the wine made in it - it is also a way to appreciate the hard work of people who are involved in it!

    Photo credit: Green Parrot Media