The thrill of drinking history




The king of Armenia’s grapes and possibly one of the oldest grape varieties in the world Areni has been present in Armenia for millennia. Never grafted and on its own roots, it is 100% indigenous to this land with a unique DNA profile that does not match any other. Elegant and fresh, thick skinned and extremely resistant to disease, through the ages Areni has adapted perfectly to the high altitudes and extreme temperatures variations of Vayots Dzor, its natural habitat.

Karasì, is a tribute to the 6100 year wine tradition of Armenia. Aged in traditional amphorae, hence its name, ‘from amphorae’ in Armenian, this wine embraces the living heritage of a country while at the same time it delves back into a long forgotten chapter in the ancient history of wine.


The vineyards can be found at altitudes of 1400mtrs / 4500ft asl. A Phylloxera free terroir with low vigour, sub alkaline, sandy soil, rich in limestone and large stones. The cuttings of the vines come from ancient abandoned vineyards of a nearby 13th century monastery. The unique confluence of the environment; the high altitudes, the low vigour soil, drastic day /night temperature variations (20°C/68°F) and late October harvest all contribute to the creation of a wine which is a faithful expression of this alluring terroir.


Stainless steel tanks have given way to temperature controlled rough concrete vats in which the wines are fermented exclusively with indigenous yeast, the micro oxygenation in the concrete being similar to that of the traditional clay amphorae ‘karas’ in which the wine is then aged for around twelve months. The ‘karas’ used are of varying sizes and are found roaming the villages. Some are buried in the ground while others are above ground each giving their own unique nuances to the wine they contain. After very light filtration the wine is bottle aged for around six months.

With Karasì we have the pleasure of tasting both place and the exotic personality of an ancient grape most have never heard of!

Alder Yarrow