Armenian Food and Drinks
Armenian food derives most of its magic from the great abundance, quality, and freshness of its locally sourced ingredients. Experiencing Armenia means trying all of the delicious meals it has to offer. Whether it's in a modern restaurant, a fast food spot, or a traditional home cooked meal – Armenia has many flavors to satisfy your tastebuds.
Cuisine That Has Stood the Test of Time
Guests visiting Armenia are very fortunate: Armenian cuisine has stood the test of time for two millennia and offers bountiful tables of mouthwatering dishes that are accompanied with intimate drinks and toasts. Here, you will enjoy an inexpensive full dinner at a respectable restaurant, aromatic coffee at a cafe and local fruits and berries at the markets fresh from the orchard.
Armenia is a place where recipes are passed on from generation to generation and the signature of specialties become a treasured family secret. It is a place where chefs conjure in the kitchen by keeping to traditional recipes, interpreting or even boldly experimenting with old ones. It is a place that mixes influences from Levantine and European cuisine due to its unique location. The Armenian cuisine is very reflects on the seasonal aspects of traditional Armenian crops as well as the animals grown in the country.
Unique qualities of the Armenian Cuisine
Armenian cuisine incorporates fresh and dried herbs in many of the dishes. Often times fresh herbs are used as accompaniments. Certain dishes are filled with spices while the taste of the others mostly relies on freshness of the used ingredients. The old Armenian culinary traditions remain incorporated in the Armenia to this day. Clay kitchenware as well as clay furnaces are actively used by Armenians, adding a unique authentic flavor to the cuisine.
Armenian cuisine is full of many meat based as well as vegetable based dishes. Due to the devotion of the population to the preservation of the Great Lent as well as due to the quantity and quality of the fresh products, Armenian cuisine is very fitting for vegan and lactose intolerant people.
Destination for Food Connoisseurs
You will learn how to bake lavash, make khorovats (barbecue), wrap tolma in grape leaves and learn to distinguish authentic Armenian cognac. You will be offered to taste crawfish with raw beer. A seemingly casual meal, yet in V century BC Xenophon, an ancient Greek historian, mentioned in “Anabasis” that the beer he tried in Armenia had excellent taste.
National Geographic included Yerevan in the list of “Six Unexpected Cities for the Food Lovers” mentioning the capital city as one of the best places in Asia with rich cuisine: the magazine advises food lovers to try gastro tours to Armenia.
Armenian Spirits and Beverages
Alcoholic drinks in Armenia have a big cultural and historical significance. Armenians take pride in the local production of drinks such as cognac, wine and oghi (Armenian Vodka), due to its taste, quality and long history. As Armenia grows 6 varieties of grape, the conditions of the country are ideal for both cognac production and winemaking. Armenian cognac is famous all around the world and is considered one of the best quality and taste wise. The sweetness of the grapes allows for the production of highly alcoholic and strong drinks.
Armenia has also a variety of traditional non-alcoholic beverages. Coffee enthusiasts will be delighted to discover new flavors served in the small cups. Armenian coffee is not only famous for its flavor, but also the traditions such as fate readings based on the smudges that the coffee leaves in the cup. It’s a completely new experience worth trying out. Some other Armenian drinks, such as the mineral water so famous around the country, have health benefiting qualities.