Piquentum Blanc 2016
In contrast to the iron rich red soil of Terzolo, Štoka, and Coronica, the Piquentum Malvazija is planted in the predominately flysch rich white soil unique to Istria. It was then fermented in 100% stainless steel after 23 days on the skins resulting in a wonderfully finegrained texture and straw yellow color. In further contrast to the coast, this is the rugged truffle ridden and forested interior that results in an undeniable savory character that is kept in balance by lively acidity. Earthy enough to pair with hard cheeses, bright enough to highlight fresh green herbs, and a medium body that stands up to fish, it’s an ideal food wine for the nearby and perhaps more familiar Italian kitchen.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
With viticulture and winemaking dating back to ancient Greek settlers, Croatia today is one of the most successful former Yugoslavia wine producing nations. Stretching along the Adriatic coastline, across the sea from Italy, it has become a hugely popular tourist destination in recent years.
Four distinct geographical Croatian wine regions comprise the country. Dalmatia, the most famous, gained global recognition with the 2002 discovery that its indigenous Crljenak Kaštelanski is actually genetically identical to California’s Zinfandel. At the time there were only nine vines of this Croatian wine variety at Kaštela near Split but in response to this discovery, vineyard acreage is increasing. Crljenak Kaštelanski is also a parent of the indigenous, Plavac Mali (Croatia’s second most planted grape). Dalmatia extends south from Kvarner along the Croatian coast and is the only Croatian wine region where reds dominate. Babić is another red skinned variety grown here; Dalmatian white wine varieties include Grk, Debit, Vugava, Bogdanuša, Gegic, and Maraština.
Istria and Kvarner reach along Croatia’s northern coastline and enjoy a Mediterranean climate. Here Croatia’s third most planted variety, Malvazija Istarska can be found in two main styles: light and fruity or made with extended skin contact and aged in oak. Teran is the main red variety here.
Inland, the Croatian Uplands are the coolest and international white varieties take up most of the vine acreage. Sauvignon blanc, Riesling, Pinot gris and Pinot Noir grow here as well as Hungary’s Furmint, locally called Moslavac
Slavonia and Danube are home to the most important Croatian white wine variety, Graševina (Welschriesling), as well as Traminac (Gewürztraminer) and Frankovka (Blaufränkisch).
Persistent with jasmine aromas and tropical fruit flavors, both grape and name are far-reaching. Approximately 70 registered grapes contain Malvasia as part of their name or are listed as a synonym. The French call it Malvoisie, Germans call it Malvasier, British say Malmsey and confusingly one variety double-times under the alias, Boal, on the island of Madeira. In any case, Italy has more forms of Malvasia than any other country: Malvasia Bianca di Candia, Malvasia di Candia Aromatico and the red-skinned Malvasia di Casorzo from Piedmont. The list goes on. Somm Secret—The actual name could stem from an Italian mispronunciation of Monemvasia, a southern Greek port.