VAN ARDI ESTATE
Regarded as the flagship project of the Armenian wine renaissance, this boutique winery is an astonishing result of one man’s vision and courage. The man is Varuzhan Mouradian, the founder, the winemaker and the driving force behind this ambitious and highly successful project. Discover our exclusive Van Ardi wine range in the UK.
About Van Ardi
Mouradian was based in Los Angeles where he had an established life and a successful career in finance. However, his long time dream was to return to Armenia and to make wine which would reflect the character and the beauty of this land in all its splendour. So Varuzhan spent years reading on viticulture, wine production and winery management. In 2008, when he finally felt that he was ready, he pursued his wife and four children. And thus, the whole family moved to Armenia, changing a comfortable life in LA to digging the soil in a small village miles away from Yerevan. This was the start of Van Ardi wine story.
Luckily, Varuzhan’s family supported him in this adventure. In fact, his wife and children joined him in his hard work from the start – from planting the vines to hosting the first tastings. All in all, this is a family project to the core. Even the name, “Van Ardi” tells a family story. It translates as “Sun of Van” – Van is a lake and a city eastern Turkey where Mouradian’s ancestors came from.
Van Ardi’s nine hectares of vineyards are found at the foothills of Aragats, the highest mountain in Armenia (4,090 metres above sea level). As such, the vineyards benefit from an extraordinary exposition. Namely, they are sited on south-southeast facing slopes, at an altitude of 1,050m above sea level. In addition, the soils here are perfect for the wines. Rocky and volcanic, they are organically poor, but rich in minerals.
From Vines To Wines
The most fascinating thing about Van Ardi vineyards is that they are regularly treated with… music! The owner believes that beautiful harmonious sounds can have a positive effect on the structure of water (and grapes, after all, are made up of about 80% water). So the vines here “listen” to regular concerts. Specifically, classical, jazz and Armenian records are played at the vineyards. In addition, the plants and the whole winery resonate with the beautiful sounds of bells. In honour of Mouradian’s father who was a priest, a bell tower was built overlooking the vineyards.
The grape varieties planted here are mostly indigenous: Areni Noir, Hakhtanak, Kakhet and Kangun. In addition, there are some Syrah vines which Mouradian, a fan of this variety, brought from California. The grapes are hand-harvested and hand-sorted, thus only the best fruit is selected. Van Ardi wine range includes reds, whites and roses. Fruit-forward and harmonious, Van Ardi wine portfolio caters for international palates while still maintaining the unique Armenian identity. Today, Van Ardi is considered one of the flagship projects of the Armenian wine renaissance and Van Ardi wines are highly sought after.
Van Ardi is open for exquisite tours and tastings. Anahit, Varuzhan’s wife, is the chef of the estate culinary experiences. Wine and food pairing, dinners, weddings and parties – whatever the occasion, everything is done here to create an unforgettable immersive journey into Armenian wine, food and culture.