Wine is an ancient tradition in the Balkans, but wine production suffered from the impact of collectivised agricultural during the Communist Era. Recently, a new era in Balkan wine has dawned…
In recent years, winemakers in Serbia, Croatia, and other countries have begun to revitalise their vineyards, rediscovering old grape varieties and resurrecting forgotten vineyards. What they are producing is far from the standardised tastes of mass production and Balkan wines are beginning to once again reclaim their position amongst the best European wines.
The cultivation and harvesting of grapes in Croatia, dates back to the first settlement of these lands.
We know the importance and significance that wine has had as part of the lives of the Greeks, who founded many cities on the Croatian coast and the islands. Less well documented is the influence of Romans on Croatian winemaking, who in ancient times settled a large part of the lands that we now know as Croatia.
In the first half of the 20th century, when phylloxera affected a large part of the vineyards of Europe, Croatia’s relative geographic isolation from mainland vineyards meant that they were able to initially able to avoid the plague and maintain the production of wine.
Yet, a few years after the initial plagues, phylloxera inevitably reached Croatia, resulting in a huge decline in wine production, at the time one of Croatia’s key industries. As a result of this crisis, a large part of the population was forced to leave the country to look for work elsewhere, one of the largest exoduses in the history of the country.
At the end of the Second World War, Communism, under Tito, governs Yugoslavia. For wine production, quantity is preferred over quality, and vines are planted in unsuitable locations in order to increase production.
At the beginning of the 1990s, Yugoslavia disintegrates and Croatia becomes independent, before the entire region falls war for 4 years. The impact of this conflict, which will continue to be felt for the following decade, is a financial weakening of the country throughout the late 1990s and many large state-owned companies shut down entirely.
Starting in the early 2000s, a liberalisation of the country’s economy provides an opportunity for individuals and businesses to take possession of formerly stateheld properties, including vineyards. As a result, vineyard size is drastically reduced and wine-makers opt to focus on quality, preferring to take ownership of lands best suited for cultivation.
For the past 10 years, Croatia’s wine production has focused on quality. This, coupled with significant foreign investment over the past 5-6 years, has enabled the country to produce wines gain more and more international recognition with each passing year.
Starting in Zagreb, discover the vineyards and hilltop villages of Istria. This discovery trip is complemented by culinary delights and gourmet offerings.
Either discover for the first time or learn more about Croatian wine with this tour from Zagreb to Pulpa, taking in the little known vineyards of Istria.
Discover the secrets of the best red and white wines: blending, biodynamic winemaking, certified organic wine, and the main grape variety of the Istrian peninsula; Istria Malvoisie (Istarska Malvazija).
This 9-day tour can easily be combined with a tailor-made holiday in the Balkans, enabling you to exploreCroatia’s wine heritage, its gastronomy and to discover a region so close and yet also so little known …
Istrian Malvasia is the endemic grape variety in the Istrian peninsula, unknown in many parts of the world. It can be found in Italy, Slovenia and Croatia, where it is the most prevalent of the white grape varieties. It is related to the Malvasia Bianca Longa variety, also known as Malvasia del Chianti.
Our team of tailor-made specialists, rich from an extensive experience in Latin America, is now based in the Balkans, with a strong commitment to excellence, a personalized service to your needs, and a great expertise of the destination as locals. We encourage an open and dynamic dialogue as we listen and match your expectations, crafting your holidays in Slovenia, Croatia and Montenegro.