The Forgotten European Cheese

Georgia’s artisanal cheesemaking tradition was forced underground due to an oppressive Soviet-planned economy, but one woman is dedicated to bringing the ancient varieties back.

The mother of Georgian cheese

According to researcher Ana Mikadze-Chikvaidze, Georgia may be the homeland of cheese – an accolade to complement the country’s more well-known claim as the cradle of wine. She says that the local Mtskheta museum, located about 26km north of Tbilisi, has archaeological evidence hinting that Georgians thousands of years ago may have been the first-known humans to make cheese. Over time, different regions of Georgia developed distinct techniques resulting in a veritable tapestry of cheese varieties.