Close to Shamkir, backed by starkly arid hills, is the Sharg-Ulduzu (Şərq Ulduzu) winery. Meaning ‘Star of the East’, Sharg-Ulduzu produces a range of dry red single grape wines (Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Merlot, Saperavi) along with blends in which a traditional cooling technique has stops fermentation to produce low- alcohol semi-sweet wines maintaining much of the natural sugar. Examples include Shemkirskaya Krepost (Şəmkir Qalası or Merlot-Cabernet-Sauvignon), Shishtapa (Şiştəpə or Saperavi-Merlot) and Skazka Vostoka (Şərq Nağılı or Saperavi-Tavkveri). The whites follow a similar pattern and include a decent, dry Bayanshira.
Aghdam - This port wine is a blend of Bayan Shira and Rkatsiteli grapes. It has a dark golden colour and fruity odour and is usually drunk with fruits, nuts and desserts.
Bayan Shira - A dry white wine made from Bayan Shira grapes, one of the most popular types during the Soviet period and widely used today in Azerbaijani winemaking. This is a light white wine with a hint of black pepper.
Shiraz – A dry red wine made from Shiraz grapes from southern France that has a dark and velvety colour. Expect a taste of currants, scent of spices and fruity notes.
Rkatsiteli - A dry white wine made from Rkatsiteli, a Georgian grape also used to produce brandies. This is a rich wine with an aroma of melon and a light golden colour.
The winery organises tours of the site that include degustations of all the various wines produced here, accompanied by tasty snacks. Also included is a guided tour of the Sharg Ulduzu museum, which offers a glimpse into the rich, German-inspired winemaking traditions of the Shamkir region. Like Goygol, Shamkir was also once a German colony whose residents were heavily involved in winemaking until being shipped off to Kazakhstan at Stalin’s command in 1941. But still today the Germans’ presence can be felt in the town centre, where you can wander around the well-planned streets lined by original part-timbered houses, giant plane trees and a beautiful early 19th-century white Lutheran church. From here, consider taking the scenic drive towards Gadabey that leads you into the heart of the Lesser Caucasus Mountains.
Mon – Sat from 09:00 till 18:00
- Baku – Gazakh highway 388th km, Shamkir
- +994 2230 5909