MULTIDISCIPLINARY INVESTIGATION OF IDENTITY OF THE “ARENI” GRAPE VARIETY
Having centuries-old tradition in viticulture and winemaking Armenia characterized with high ampelographic diversity of grape local autochthonous and modern cultivars. Meantime, the world’s earliest known wine-making facility has been discovered during the excavation of Areni-1 cave dating back to 6000 years (the beginning of the 4th Millennium BC). In parallel, among huge diversity of wine grapes the so called “Areni” variety is one of the most famous, used for red wine production by majority of the winemaking companies and local farms nowadays. A combination of genetic, ampelographic and archaeological data allows us to come to preliminary conclusion that as a true to type “Sev (Black) Areni” variety can be considered the one which is growing in old “Vankapatkan” vineyards of Vayots Dzor and in grape collection of the Scientific Center of Fruit Growing, Viticulture and Wine-making in Armenia (accession N42). The “Seyrak Areni” (70) should not be considered as a synonym of “Sev (Black) Areni”. In this study the authors tried to highlight also the importance of combination of the generated data from ancient and modern grape multidisciplinary investigations.