You will have an idea of the importance of wines in this country when you come to know that one among the national treasures of the country is a 400-year-old grapevine, which is deemed to be the oldest grapevinein the world.
It is also interesting to know that the wines of Slovenia are so much popular with the people that Slovenia's National Anthem apart from being a plea for peace among neighbors is also a popular wine-drinking song.
Wines of Slovenia - The Excellency
Once you taste Slovenian wines (vino in Slovene), you will know for sure that they are of good quality; you know, in case of wines you cannot just trust anyone's views, you need to experience the smell and the taste of wine on your tongue to know the quality of it.
Once you step in Slovenia, you will know that the country is into the making of some very good wines. If you have a nose for excellent wines, you need to learn that the best wine producers at Slovenia compete in an international market.
It is unfortunate that whenever the topic of wines in Slovenia crops up, what generally comes to mind is the Yugoslavian wine, and the reason behind this is Avia, which is an inexpensive wine that was marketed around the world under the old regime and was turned out in considerable amounts.
Every former Yugoslav republic has its own historic wine heritage and that includes the country of Slovenia.
Wine lovers from all over the world especially desire to have a taste of wine from the wine regions along Slovenia's border along with Italy as well as its short Adriatic coast.
Slovene Grape Varieties
When the subject is wines in Slovenia, don't you think you need to know about the grapes here?
The grapes at Slovenia have Slovenian names; you have the very popular Western European variety of wine grapes, which are identified as Pinot Grigio ("Sivi Pinot" in Slovene), Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Merlot.
There are also some local grapes that Slovenia shares with Italy; for instance, you have the grapes called Ribolla ("Rebula"), Tocai Friulano ("Frilanski Tokaj") and Refosco ("Refosk").
Slovenia has three main wine regions:
- Podravlje from northeast Stajerska and Prekmurje
- Posavlje extends from eastern Stajerska across Sava river into Dolenjska and Bela Krajina. Cvicek a dry light red with low alcohol content (8.5%-10%) is the wine to taste in this region
- Primorska where the wonderful Mediterranean climate along the short Adriatic coast allows producing excellent reds and whites.
- Teran is a deep red spicy wine made from Slovenia grape variety the Refosk (Refosco). Malvazija a light wine of straw-color makes a good drink on a warm evening. Reds from the Vipava valley and Brda Hills (Gorisko Brda) are also fine wines.
Apart from the above major wine-producing regions there're 10 more districts in Slovenia that produce wines from local grapes.
Buying wine in Slovenia
If your tongue is familiar with the taste of good quality wines from France or Italy, then Slovenian wines will also please you. The characteristic of the wines here is dry or sweet; the wines appear to be well-balanced and fruity.
These great tasting wines in Slovenia are difficult to get outside this country. Small quantities are exported and wines of Slovenia fail to satisfy an international market, merely because most of the producers do not make enough wine that can reach all the people all over the globe.
If you want to buy quality Slovenian wines pop into speciality wine shops called vinoteke. The expert sales person can recommend you some great bottles that suits your taste.
In most vinoteke-s you can sample the wine before buying. Vodni Stolp wine shop in Maribor's centrum has a large hall upstairs dedicate to wine tasting.
Vinoteka Bradesko in Ljubljana (Dunajska 18) offers a large selection of local wines.
Price of an ordinary quality Slovene wine is cc. 5 ?/bottle while a bottle of top quality wine costs cc. 8-10 ?. Also look at the labels on the bottles.
Look for the ones with gold label and displaying the words vrhunsko vino (top-quality wine). The term "kakovostno vino" on a silver label indicates taht the bottle is a quality wine.
True wine aficionados should explore the Wine Routes of Slovenia where they'll meet private wine producers and taste some excellent wines straight from the barrel.
However, things are not going to be the same for Slovenian wines with plans to get a wider audience is in the process.