I once a knew a Georgian named Eddy. He was a doorman at work. Recently my brother, who now has moved from heading kitchens to selling wine, introduced me to another, David Sarajishvili, the creator and founder of a Georgian brandy distillery and exporter. Sharing a bottle with me last weekend, my brother's head was full of dreams of Georgia, specifically for its rivers where he wants to fly fish, and for the nation's ancient wine culture. According to what he's heard, "it's the oldest in the world."
As we shared the bottle, my brother recounted how Stalin, a native of Georgia, had once served Winston Churchill an after-dinner brandy. Apparently Churchill made a face. Stalin realized they had served a batch from Armenia, and ordered a new bottle. Stoking a cigar, now enjoying this second round, Churchill asks "French?" Stalin happily pointed out that, no, it was Georgian.
Like my mom, me and my brother usually drink apertifs in the form of armagnac sherry. But that may change moving forward, as the Georgians really do have a nice brandy.