DISCOVER THE INDIGENOUS GRAPES
Graševina - the "darling of continental Croatia".
Graševina is the most widely planted varietal in all of Croatia. The best quality grapes are grown in the Slavonia region, which enjoys a dry climate and warm soils.
It has been genetically matched to the Borba grape, from south-west Spain.
It is a food-friendly wine, which can be produced in a variety of styles, from dry to off-dry to sweet, sparkling and macerated. Wines are mineral with good acidity.
If you are looking to discover a unique, lively and expressive white then look no further ...
PLAVAC MALI UNPACKED
Plavac Mali - the powerful "little blue".
Plavac Mali is an ancient variety, and the most widely planted red in Croatia. It thrives in mainland Dalmatia, the Pelješac peninsula, and the islands of Brač, Hvar, Korcula and Vis, where it loves the steep sandy terraces that sweep down to the Adriatic Sea.
It is the renowned offspring of two old Croatian varietals - tribidrag (the original zinfandel) and dobričić - and makes powerful reds.
Plavac Mali wines are full bodied, hearty and opulent, with ripe notes of fig, plum and spice, pairing well with game and red meat dishes.
If you enjoy Zinfandel / Primitivo then you should love the "little blue"...
Malvazija Istarska - the "versatile crowd pleaser".
Malvazija Istarska is a classic old world indigenous variety and the flagship white wine of Istria, where it has been cultivated for centuries, thriving in the region's distinct micro-climate.
It is of Istrian origin, not to be confused with other malvasias, native to it's old world neighbours in Italy and Greece.
It is incredibly versatile, producing wonderful fresh wines, fascinating macerated orange wines, as well as having the potential for barrel aging. Floral aromas prevail, with refreshing notes of fruit, mineral and a mild bitterness on the palate.
If you enjoy fresh whites & well structured orange wines then this is must try ...
Teran - "taste the Istrian terroir".
Dating back to at least the 14th century, Teran has evolved from the working man's staple to the rich and robust varietal of today. Notoriously hard to tame, it loves the iron-rich red soil of Istria, and its wild character is closely tied to Istria's identity.
It has been genetically matched to Italy's Terrano grape, a member of the refosco family.
Deep purple in colour, the best teran's show elegance, ripeness of fruit, strong earthy notes, naturally elevated acidity and firm tannins. Enjoy with red meats and game dishes, as well as prosciutto and aged cheeses.
If you enjoy earthy old world wines then Teran is the one for you ...
Pošip - "Korčula's indigenous gem".
Pošip is the most widely planted white varietal in Dalmatia. Indigenous to the stunning island of Korčula, birthplace of Marco Polo, it is a very adaptable and terroir driven grape that produces full bodied yet fresh whites.
It is believed to originate from Korčula in Dalmatia, with confirmed parentage to three other locally grown indigenous varietals.
It is a versatile grape, which can be produced in a variety of styles, from fresh to macerated, and tends to be high in alcohol with fresh acidity. Wines are medium to full bodied, rich and yet fresh, with herbal and mineral notes - a perfect companion to seafood.
If you are looking to be seduced by something unknown, start with this gem ...
Babić - "a fighter with great potential".
Babić is local to the central and northern Dalmatian coast. The best quality grapes are grown on old vines, in windy locations where yields are low. It thrives in extreme locations, on rocky, seemingly inaccessible terrain, where grapes need to fight to survive.
Genetic analysis is complicated and ongoing. It is confirmed to be related to Plavac Mali - either as a grand-parent or half-sibling, as a result of it's relationship with Dobričić.
Wines are deeply coloured, with a palate of dark fruits, herbal notes and spices. It has great body and well-rounded tannins, resulting in a great balance.
If you enjoy a good Chianti Classico then you should try this Dalmatian fighter ...