Ever tried Croatian wine? I’ve done the hard yards for you and put together five of the best Croatian wines I think you should try.
What are the best Croatian wines? Croatia isn’t that well known despite it’s optimum wine making climate. Their grape varieties are also lesser known due to their complicated names and pronunciations! But this doesn’t mean they should be overlooked by any means.
I recently took a trip to Croatia with the hubby plus our best man from our wedding and his lovely GF. We hit up Dubrovnik and Hvar and I was genuinely, pleasantly surprised at the quality of Croatian wine available.
So let’s get into the vino.
The main red variety of Croatia and the only one I drank (it was f*cking hot yeah). This guy comes from Southern Croatia, the coastal region of Dalmatia, and was one of the first grapes in Croatia to have it’s own appellations in Dingac and Postup.
It’s big and bold, pretty alcoholic and has rich berry flavours with a bit of sticky fig chucked in. Absolutely lush so I did feel bad having to chuck in an ice cube or two because of the heat. But if you want to go the distance when drinking at lunch time in high temperatures, just keep up the water right?
Consumed in Ala Mizerija near Pile Gate in Dubrovnik.
First of the four white wines I tried, bogdanjuša doesn’t sound sexy but it actually translates to “Godsend” and was my absolute faaaavvvvvourite.
So the wine came from Carić who produce wine specifically from Hvar island.
It’s super light and fresh with just the right amount of acidity. It took our fish dinner at Macondo to another level, complimenting the mussels, fish soup and seam bream beautifully.
You know when everything falls in to place – the restaurant, the company, the temperature of the warm night and, well, my outfit too. This wine just put the cherry on a lovely meal and evening.
Consumed in the aforementioned, Macondo – a recommendation from our Airbnb host and it did not disappoint!
Consumed on a sunny afternoon in Hvar, posip, pronounced “poship” is a full bodied white wine which is now grown throughout Dalmatia. Pošip is crisp and full of flavours like apple and citrus but with nutty tones thrown in for good measure.
Different to a lot of things I’ve tried, I’d say the closest is potentially Fiano. Would also suggest consuming with a good meal as it’s quite rich on it’s on but delicious nonetheless. Get it down ya.
Consumed in Splash Beach Bar on Hvar water front.
The second biggest wine variety in this beautiful country is Malvazija. The native white grape comes from Istria, Northern Coastal region of Croatia.
This white is refreshing and typically lower in alcohol which is good for smashing back on sunny, summer days. We mixed with a little sparkling water to keep hydrated (I know but it’s hot there!!). Our version was a little sweet but malvazija is largely dry but with honey and spice flavours throughout.
It was also suggested that you don’t get the 1 litre with a screw cap version of this wine haha. BUT good news is that in Europe you can drink the “proper” wine and the table wine and you’re still going to have a good time!
Purchased in the local supermarket and consumed on the glorious rooftop of our Hvar Airbnb.
Bet you weren’t expecting to this controversial C word in this article were ya! Well, not only is chardonnay up and coming in Croatia, it turns out it may even have its roots there!
Word is, chardonnay began as a cross between French Pinot Noir and native Croatian grape, Starjerska Belina. Who knew?!
Grown near the capital Zagreb, throughout Istria and in the Plesevica Hills of Northern Croatia, the version we tried was smooth and creamy, without too much oak and definitely could give other well known regions a run for its money.
Consumed in Romerquelle restaurant near Pile Gate.
Which other Croatian wines should I try?
Wine Folly suggests looking at Grk (dry white), Teran (bold, tannic red) and Graševina (everyday, dry white). Take a look at the Croatian wine varieties chart below.
However, when I asked for the Graševina dining out in Dubrovnik, the waiter informed me it was no good and promptly delivered local Chardonnay instead haha. But no doubt there’s more to try, there always is.
Don’t fancy Croatia? How about Mexico? Read my brief history of the place and vinos here.
As always, let me know what you’re drinking!