Georgian feast traditions

The Georgians are exceptionally hospitable nation. They say ‘A guest is from God’, therefore, try to offer the very best to guests. It is shown not only by the wide range of dishes and drinks on the table but, also, through warm and lively atmosphere during the party. 

Georgian feast is called ‘Supra’, which can be translated as tablecloth. Georgian ‘Supra’ consists of four essential components: wine, bread (food), toasts and songs. Often it is called an academy, as it is strictly ritualized and is learnt from childhood. Children observe adults, listen to them, learn from them and get knowledge about the things to be cherished in life.

Tamada, i.e. a toastmaster is the head of Supra. He leads it and the festive mood of the party very much depends on his skills. It takes natural talent to be a good Tamada. He is elected at the beginning of the party and should be well-bred, educated, clever and respected. He should create a positive, lively atmosphere among guests and make them feel relaxed and happy. Tamada must be well aware of the country’s history, traditions and customs, be eloquent with a good sense of humor. Poets, writers and actors usually make good toastmasters.

Georgian party has its own scenario; the prelude, climax and ending, each of them accompanied by relevant toasts. The general mood and atmosphere around the table also gets better and more cheerful. Some toasts are obligatory, others- spontaneous or optional. Tamada starts with traditional, obligatory toasts, though their consequence depends on the event or occasion, e.g. wedding, birthday, funeral, etc. If another member of a party wants to propose a toast, he should get permission from the toastmaster.  For special toasts some specific vessels of different forms and size are used instead of glasses. The most popular ones are horn and bowl.

The traditions of Georgian feast are endless. The toast is an inseparable part of it, through which people express all kinds of ideas about life and friendship and love. Toasts are often wise and usually positive, accompanied with humor and jokes and finish with traditional 

                                                                                                     GAUMARJOS! (cheers)

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