In Georgia, there are many different traditions, but the most important are a few: a tradition of hospitality, weddings, feasts, the cult of the vine, the celebration of various events that are part of the life of modern Georgian population.
The leader of the table
Tamada – a leader of the table. The Georgian table is unthinkable without Tamada. Tamada is the leader of the table that manages it, utters toasts and is responsible for entertaining guests. Toasts have a symbolic meaning and other members of the table after the Tamada have their versions of toast.The tamada always opens with a toast to Sakartvelo (Georgia, in Georgian); then one to God; then one to the most honoured people in the room – the guests. This tradition of Georgian hospitality is at the root of Georgian wine culture. It is one of communal celebration, ritual and emotion.
Christmas in January
In Georgia, Christmas is celebrated on the 7th January. This is because the Georgian Orthodox Church use the old ‘Julian’ calendar for their festivals.On Christmas Day, many people will go on a ‘Alilo’, a parade in the streets. They are dressed in special clothes and costumes to celebrate Christmas. Some people carry Georgian flags.Children like taking part in the Alilo as they’re often given sweets!
In Georgian Happy/Merry Christmas is ‘გილოცავ შობა-ახალ წელს’ (gilocav shoba-akhal c’els).