This weekend, the first festival dedicated to the Ukrainian Winemaker’s Day was held at the River Mall in Kyiv. This event became a vivid symbol of the revival and popularization of Ukrainian winemaking. Visitors had the opportunity to enjoy wine products from all over the country, as well as learn about traditional and modern winemaking methods.
Maksim Urakin, founder of Experts Club, a Kyiv-based think tank, noted that the production and sale of wine products in Ukraine today is complicated primarily by significant competition from foreign wines.
“Experts Club’s information and analytical project systematically supports all producers in the country, and winemakers are no exception. According to Experts Club, imported wine already accounts for more than 70% of total sales on the Ukrainian market, while the share of Ukrainian wine is below 30%. Holding thematic festivals dedicated to winemaking could open up unique varieties of Ukrainian wine to consumers, which are in no way inferior to French or Italian wines. That is why we all need to show consumer patriotism and buy Ukrainian wine,” added Maksim Urakin.
According to Volodymyr Pechko, CEO of UKRSADVINPROM, recent years have been difficult for Ukrainian winemaking, primarily due to the war. However, thanks to the efforts of craft producers, the industry continues to develop.
“I am confident that our festival will become an annual event, as we must support Ukrainian producers and promote Ukrainian quality both in Ukraine and internationally. I sincerely congratulate all winemakers on their professional holiday and thank them for the incredible work they continue to do. I also express my gratitude to the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine for its assistance in organizing this year’s event,” he said.
Natalia Blagopoluchna, Head of the Ukrainian Association of Winemakers and Sommeliers, emphasized the uniqueness of Ukrainian craft wines.
“The diversity of our wines is the result of unique local climatic conditions and the peculiarities of the grape varieties we use. They are striking in their originality and are admirable,” said Natalia Blagopoluchna.
The festival took place on November 11-12 on the Dnipro embankment at the RIVER MALL shopping center. The organizers of the festival, the Public Union “Association of Gardeners, Winegrowers and Winemakers of Ukraine” (UKRSADVINPROM), the All-Ukrainian Association of Winemakers and Sommeliers, and the analytical center “Club of Experts”, presented the best winemakers of Ukraine with certificates from the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food.
One of the highlights of the festival was a charity auction that not only raised funds to support an important cause but also demonstrated the social responsibility of the organizers and participants. The auction was hosted by TV presenter and Help for Ukraine ambassador Yevhen Koshovoy. The unique Ukrainian-made wine lots on display were the subject of competition among collectors and wine lovers. All the proceeds from the auction were donated to the Reconstruction and Development Fund of Ukraine. These funds will be used to finance the purchase of a mobile hospital to rescue the wounded. In total, the auction raised about UAH 100,000.
“I am pleased that today I had the opportunity to present these unique wines to true connoisseurs of winemaking. Also, each of those who received a collector’s bottle today can be sure that the money spent will go to a really necessary and good cause – rescuing the wounded and war-affected,” said Koshovoy.
The festival ended with an award ceremony where the winners of the Best Winery of the Festival competition were announced. It was a moment of pride for the winemakers, who were recognized for their efforts and skills. Voting for the best wine took place both with the help of a QR code and by filling out ballots. Each guest had the opportunity to express their opinion.
Three wineries became the winners based on the choice of festival visitors: Zelenytsy winery, Gigineishvili Wine House and the Institute of Horticulture of the National Academy of Agrarian Sciences of Ukraine. All of them received the same number of votes.
– Overall, the festival will feature the following Ukrainian wine brands:
– Zelenytsy winery;
– Gigineishvili Wine House;
– Dnipro hills (Stoic Ukrainian winery);
– Tiras Vaineri LLC (My Wine, Eduard Gorodetsky);
– 46 Parallel;
– Uman Winery of Igor Maksymenko;
– Father’s wine VB;
– Villa Tinta;
– Institute of Horticulture of the National Academy of Agrarian Sciences of Ukraine;
– Kulinichenko winery;
– Wines of the Silver Land;
– National Research Center “Institute of Viticulture and Winemaking named after
Gastronomic wine pairings were provided by such producers as Tsar Khlib, TM Zinka, TM Karapyshivski sausages, and others.
Festival partner Voda.ua
Thus, the Winemaker’s Day festival in Kyiv has not only become a significant event in the cultural calendar of the capital, but also made a significant contribution to the development of Ukrainian winemaking. It brought together winemakers, sommeliers, and wine lovers, facilitating the exchange of knowledge and experience, and drew attention to the Ukrainian wine industry. The organizers of the festival announced plans to hold similar events in the future, giving a new impetus to the development of this sector in our country.