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The winery is named after Kataro monastery – a sacred place located at an altitude of 2500 meters above sea level, overlooking mountains and stone gorges, dotted with islands of flowers and fragrant herbs. The legend says that in the third century a brother and a sister built it together after they saw a sign from God; the brother was building the temple and the sister was bringing him stones and water from the spring at the bottom of the mountain. The way to Kataro temple is long and arduous: surrounded by magnificent nature and weathered by warm winds, this temple embodies a man’s desire for perfection and nobility.
Kataro Wines come from a picturesque hillside in a lush region of Artsakh, south-east of Armenia. This small region is little known in the world and hard to reach, but for those who reach it - Artsakh opens an astonishing and splendid beauty of nature, pure air and breath-taking views. Closest locality to the winery is Togh village, founded in the 9th century. The original settlement was an ideal place for the protection from the enemies - a high mountain plateau with a single path to reach it, it had never been conquered or invaded. Many well preserved wine jugs ("karas") with traces of Khndoghni grape variety have been excavated on the plateau and on the territory of the Melik's Palace, which was built at the bottom of the plateau in the 16th century and now is a part of Togh village.
Khndoghni (also known as Sireni) is an ancient, indigenous and rare red grape variety that is not cultivated anywhere in Europe and in Americas, but abundantly grows in the soft climate of Artsakh region. Special terrain, soil quality, high number of sunny days per year and soft climate with mild winters account for the birth of a strong and unusual dry red wine, rich in tannins, full and with excellent taste. Khndoghni (“khen-dogh-nee”) comes from the word "khind" which means "joy" and it is the best description for the wine - it is crisp, cheering and refreshing. The vines for the Kataro wines were planted in the year 2000.
The Kataro Reserve wines are aged for three years in Caucasian oak barrels sourced from local high-elevation forests. Rich in tannins, with strong and succulent taste. Has interesting aromas of blueberries and cotton candy. Best with meat dishes and strong cheeses.
Vahe Keushguerian is the man behind these amazing Kataro wines. From the age of 19, Vahe moved from Lebanon to Italy and then to California. In California, he was initially working at restaurants and eventually moved on to importing Italian wines. In 1994, Vahe relocated to Italy and started making wine in Chianti and Puglia. After his first trip to Armenia in 1997, he decided to buy a plot of land and plant vineyards there. From then on, he started going back to Armenia every year. In 2009 Vahe moved his family to Armenia and has been making great wines ever since. Besides the Kataro wines Vahe also makes some amazing sparkling wines under the eponymous brand Keush.