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Talk with Ararat Mkrtchyan

Popularity of Armenian wines is growing worldwide every year. Definitely it is related both with advance of quality and improvement of conditions for it. Foreign investments into winemaking on Armenian land are significant.

We have decided to talk with Ararat Mkrtchyan whose great-grandfather believed in the power of this land 100 years ago, founded vineyards in order to create “Voskeni” wine. His dream came into existence and became embodiment of one of the best Armenian wines.


-How did the idea of creation of “Voskeni” occur? Please tell us about the founder of the wine.

-The wish of creation of a winery of our great-grandfather Smbat Matevosyan was our unique response or protest against skeptics not believing in their own success in their homeland. Constant ties with Armenia were required so that it would not turn into benevolence but would be creativity. We were always in search for bonds with our roots, with lost roots which could help us understand ourselves better.  

More than 90 years ago my great-grandfather Smbat Matevosyan full of patriotism and business grasp decided to return to Armenia. Prior to the World War I he migrated to Boston, USA, where within the period of two decades from an ordinary worker in a cement factory he grew into a successful businessman with a solid capital. He was dreaming to fulfill his projects in Armenia and with this end he sold out his assets , he bought some wagons of goods and repatriated. Here he founded agricultural business and bought vineyards in triumphant Sardarapat where he was planning to set up powerful winery. However, he did not succeed in fulfilling his plans. Those times he was a member of Dasnaktsutyun party, a successful and a rich person commanding several foreign languages. Those matchless features caused repression and confiscation by KGB servicemen. Based on the achieve data he was shot dead during one of the excruciating questionings of the secret police (NKVD). 

voskeni.png - What was the reason of restoration of vineyards in Sardarapat?

- In 2008 when we were studying the archives of our great-grandfather Smbat we discovered the information about the vineyards and we decided to find them. And my father obtained them in hot pursuit as he wanted to maximally save the memory of our great-grandfather.  But there was neither an agriculturist nor a winemaker in our family and those vineyards were like a suitcase without a handle: it was hard to carry them but also it was a pity to throw them away.   

- What kind of difficulties did you face in the beginning?

- After the vineyards were re-obtained we faced the cruel reality. Workers and neighbors treated us like tourists who will leave soon. But we did not give up and started studying viniculture and we learnt from our own mistakes. My father completely moved to Armenia and my mother and sister followed him. I offered founding a dream vinery and invested financial means. And we continue living with this dream and we already have the first confident steps. We have created one of the high-quality Armenian wines and we will continue working on improvement every year.

voskenikk.png - What is the peculiarity of your vineyards and wines?

-Vineyards are unique at least with the fact that they are  blessed (crossing fingers). For several years the rough weather has been passing by us: hail, frosts, though our close neighbors periodically suffer from these effects. We are completely sure that it is family relics. It accepted us and we are taking care. Armenian sorts grow there. The soil is rocky, dry, with huge number of limestone. 

The characteristic feature of “Voskeni” wines is constant search of its own handwriting, form and taste. Red wines “Voskeni” are rich in colors of berries and moderate sourness, meanwhile white wines will astonish you with minerals and fruit taste. These are the wines with which dating a girl will be successful (laughing).

It is amazing but in Europe restaurants with Michelin stars offer these wines where chef-sommeliers always seek something unique to their dishes.

- How did the consumer meet “Voskeni” wine in the market?

- We appeared in the market fearsome since we had not been engaged in wine sale before that. We organized degustations. From the very first day everyone encouraged us as soon as they tasted our wines and owing to these people we believed in this even better. Then we mustered up courage and appeared in Europe, Russia and USA and everywhere we felt the interest. And I am sure that the world waits for Armenian wines.

voskeni..png -How do you imagine the development of the Armenian market of winemaking and in what direction will “Voskeni” develop?

- Very soon Armenia will become a country with developed viniculture. There will be more producers and consumption will grow. “Voskeni” will continue experimenting and it will present unique wines of various rare sorts and unusual methods of production in the market. We believe in people and in desire to create. “Voskeni” grows every year and our doors are open for young professionals. Very soon the world will learn the names of Armenian winemakers and they will be highly demanded in the whole world.


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