Georgian Supra – a Traditional Wine Feast

This post contains affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Georgian Supras- this meaningful tradition is a delicious and special feast!


Traditional supra in Georgia Not technically a party, and yet so much more than a dinner- a Supra has a lot of components that come together to form an outstanding gathering. They are incredibly well-planned and orchestrated beautifully- making a traditional Supra one of the most beautiful and fun experiences you can have! This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of La Crema. The opinions and text are all mine. One of my favorite parts of visiting the Republic of Georgia was experiencing the longstanding tradition of the Supra dinner- a spirited, lively, and overwhelming feast where wine, food, and fellowship are the highlight.

Tbilisi, the captiol of Georgia
Tbilisi, the captiol of Georgia

It’s fitting that my first (of many) travel recaps for Georgia on Sweet C’s Designs is of the supra tradition- because it was one of my first, and favorite experiences in Georgia. Not only did we head to a supra almost immediately upon landing in the country- hosted by one of our dear friends from church back home whose family lives in Khashuri- but we had a few over the length of our trip, and each one was full of delicious food, lively conversation, and was completely and totally unlike anything I had experienced before. Supras are a complicated (but smooth) dinner that runs more like an elaborate feast, a bit like a waltz with food and wine. There are traditional roles for the host, the guests, and the person making toasts- and wine, of course, plays a vital role. This guide will help you learn about Supras, and hopefully inspire you to open some bottles of La Crema and throw your own!

Georgian Flag flying outside cathedral, Mtskheta Georgia
Georgian Flag flying outside cathedral, Mtskheta Georgia

Components of a Supra   Tamada– the toastmaster. Depending on how strictly you’d like to adhere to Supra tradition, the Tamada is the only one allowed to lead toasts – and is expected to down his glass of wine after giving each toast. Guests are also encouraged to do the same- however not expected to (especially women- though you’ll be loved if you try). The Tamada should be witty, smart, and thoughtful (and for a group like ours- speak the language of everyone present.) One night, we had a Tamada giving the toast in Georgian, English, and Russian. Thankfully, he understood brevity and kept his toasts meaningfully short! Tamadas can go on for a while though- so appreciate the toasts as a chance to take a break from all the eating and drinking and enjoy the friends and family around you. While the Tamada is expected to drink, drink, and drink some more- the Tamada is not supposed to ever act drunk and is expected to keep the toasts, and the evening, going. Choosing a proper Tamada is a very important part of the Supra tradition! Alaverdi– someone the Tamada calls on to extend the toast. The toast can continue from person to person as the Tamada choses- making some toasts extremely long. Food at a traditional Georgian Supra   Food- Georgian Supras are multi-course meals- but think of the courses as more “waves” of food. The table will be full of food when you arrive, and more and more food will keep coming so it is always mercilessly packed. Georgian Supras are a celebration- and there is food everywhere. In Georgian culture, it would be rude to not have an overflowing table for guests- even when they are full. There is a ton of food coming at you from all angles, and the family hosting you will just keep bringing more until the Supra is done- so don’t expect to make much of a dent in the meal. Traditional Georgian Supra at a home I was a bit taken aback at the effort by our hosts to bring so much delicious (and beautiful) food, I felt bad there was so much leftover at the end. This is intentional on their part- it would be seen a sign of rudeness to not have an embarrassment of food for guests at a celebration. The type of food served varies from region to region, but almost always involves Khachapuri (Georgian cheese bread), Churchkeli (a grape and walnut candy), pork, chicken, eggplant stuffed with walnuts, bread and cheese- as well as family favorites and plenty of sweets or cakes. Wine in Georgia   Wine- Unsurprisingly, wine is the drink of choice at a Georgian meal. Georgia is fiercely proud of it’s wine culture- and the Supra literally revolves around wine. However, you only drink wine after the Tamada gives a toast. It’s ok to drink water, soda, or another drink during the meal- but wine is reserved for toasts. Of course, as a visitor, you’re a bit off the hook- but it’s expected to drink a glass of wine after every toast. For more about the history of wine- wine actually originated in Georgia- head to this post over on La Crema’s blog.

Traditional Georgian wine horn for toasting during supra dinners!
Georgian Wine Horn

  Horns- Many people use traditional wine horns- either from a ram or other animal- or porcelain, brass, and even metal- during supras. Large horns can hold up to three glasses worth of wine- to be downed by the toastmaster or guests during the supra. If you plan on drinking out of a horn, figure out how much it holds and pace yourself! Also, some horns can be tricky to drink out of.

Roasted pig at a Georgian Supra
Roasted pig at a Georgian Supra

  Progression of Toasts   Georgians claim that they invented toasting- and are very serious about the toast. Georgian “rule” dictates a specific order for the toasts given. While the toastmaster can come up with plenty of things to toast (supras can easily turn into an all-day and all-night event)- there is a specific order to toasting that is usually followed. Some are strict- some more of a tradition. While the Tamada speaks, it is ok to eat- but one should refrain from talking and drinking wine – raise a glass until he is done. When the Tamada is done toasting, he will drink his wine. If another person wants to speak on the topic the Tamada just gave, guests will continue holding their glass up and wait for their turn to speak on topic to drink their wine- though you can drink at any point after the Tamada if there’s something that resonates with you and you do not wish to speak. The critical rule of toasting- one cannot toast with a glass half full of wine! Of course, if you are a visitor (especially a woman), this rule is flexible- but Georgians toast with full glasses. There are generally pitchers and bottles of wines set around the Supra table so guests’ glasses remain full for toasting. Drinking out of a wine horn, tbilisi   There is a specific order traditional Georgian toasts progress in, which is obviously up for interpretation if you’re throwing your own Supra outside of Georgia. If you’d like to stick to a traditional progression (though, this depends on who you ask and these “rules” except for the first are not so hard and fast), the toast order goes:   The first toast should always be to God   The second toast should be to Georgia (and the nations of those in attendance as a sign of hospitality)   The third toast should be to mothers and children – though this was sometimes changed up depending on where the Supra was held, and what it was held for- so toasting Bride and Groom, specific saints, etc. could go here- though mothers, and the next generation, are incredibly important to Georgians. Additional toasts go to saints, family members, and on to topics- anything the Tamada and the guests would find moving. One of our supras had over 12 toasts! I am working on an idea for a traditional supra sometime soon- of course with the help of my friend who invited us to his family’s home for our first supra in Georgia. It is a tradition I’d love to bring to my friends and family who weren’t on the trip with us. When you have good wine, good food, and good friends,what more do you need? For more about Georgia, the country’s history, and our travels to the birthplace of wine, please check out this post on La Crema! It’s full of fun information we learned in Georgia, as well as some previews to the experiences I had while there. I’ll be detailing a lot more about our trip on Sweet C’s Designs, but this primer is the perfect way to learn more about where wine began! Touring the Cradle of Wine- Georgia

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of La Crema. The opinions and text are all mine.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of La Crema. The opinions and text are all mine.

About Courtney

Courtney loves to share great wine, good food, and loves to explore far flung places- all while masting an everyday elegant and easy style at lifestyle blog Sweet C’s Designs. Sweet C's devoted to finding the best food and drinks you'll want to make or find, around the world!

You May Also Like

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Kristen says:

    I love learning about new cultures and interesting traditions! What an amazing experience! So beautiful.

  2. A Little Claireification says:

    Wow – what an amazing trip. Loved learning more about Georgia and the Supra!