With the 2014 Winter Olympics starting on Friday I thought it might be interesting to find out something about Russian wine. It seems the Russians and their Baltic neighbors (Georgia, Slovenia, and Romania) have been enjoying the fruit of the wine since the time of the ancient Greeks. It wasn’t until the 1800s that Russia began to produce wine commercially but without much success due to nature, the departure of French winemakers during the Revolution and heavy government restrictions (Gorbachev’s 1980s anti-alcohol campaign dampened Russia’s spirits).
Russian wine country is around the Black Sea, near enough to Sochi. In September 2014 a trade exhibition and international conference called Wine Vodka Sochi is planned for the area to promote and explore the “beverage” industry in Russia. It’s clear from the name of the conference that wine will be competing with vodka, Russia’s most famous alcoholic beverage. There are bars that serve wine in Sochi, like the private and exclusive Bubble Bar at the Swissotel Sochi Krasnaya Polyana, but as to the local neighborhood enoteca with vini della casa, ;wine lovers in Sochi may have to settle for a silver or bronze when it comes to the enoteca event.