March 2017 Wine Alliance

 

SloCro – It’s a thing

Slovenia and Croatia – Everything old is new again

Slovenia and Croatia, formerly part of Yugoslavia, have a wine making history that dates to 2200 BC! The wines of the region were well known and highly regarded for a long time before a series of “issues” i.e., Ottoman Invasions, World Wars, Communism and that nasty bug phylloxera drove down quality wine making. During the Communist period the focus was clearly on quantity and in the ’70s, prior to the break up, Yugoslavia was one of the top 10 wine producing countries. Because wine continued to be made throughout that long rocky history, vines remained in place and a connection to land and production was maintained. These are essential elements to the current resurrection of interesting, high quality bottlings. Add that to the fact that Slovenia and Croatia have become tourist hot spots (high on my list of destinations) and it becomes easy to understand why we are seeing more and more of them in the US.

In a nutshell…

Slovenia is divided into 3 major growing regions that further breakdown into 14 appellations. The major regions are Primorska-in the west bordering Italy, Podravje – in the Northeast and Posvje- in the Southeast. There are at least 52 indigenous grape varieties plus a handful of internationals. The balance of production tips toward whites but there are some really cool reds as well. Our club wines are from  Primorska, a growing region now considered a hot bed of natural and orange wines.

Croatia was divided into two big regions until 2012 when a group of “wine professionals” got together to study and further define the country’s various terroirs. As a result of their work Croatia now has 4 major growing regions with 12 sub-regions and 66 appellations, a pretty big jump from 2. There are 62 known indigenous grape varieties along with some internationals. Again white wines out size the production of reds which makes sense when you consider proximity to the sea and the region’s cuisine. We are highlighting a red, from the southern appellation of Dalmacija. It’s made from a local grape called Plavec Mali which is a descendant of Primativo (zinfandel).

I Love Maps!– Check out where the wines you are drinking come from and day dream about the drive you could take through these two stunning countries. Or, after seeing Primorvja take a ferry through the 1200 islands off Croatia from Istria down the coast to Split on your way to Pelješac Penninsula!

Interested in joining the club? All the info you need is here!
Want to order club wines? Send an email to hello at vifseattle dot com or call us at (206)557-7357.

Drink Everyday Club

2014 Slavček Cuvée Belo, Vipavska Dolina, Slovenia $18

Grapes – Rubula, Chardonnay, Tokay

2014 Andrović Plavac Mali, Pelješac Penninsula, Croatia $20

Grape - Plavac Mali

 

Drink with Focus Club

2015 Burja Estate Bela, Primorska, Slovenia $25

Grapes - Malvazija, Rebula, Laski Rizling

2014 Burja Estate Noir, Primorska, Slovenia $36

Grape - Pinot Noir