Tuscany of the East titillates wine world with unique harvests

By Bojan Kavcic In Ormoz, Slovenia ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-08-22 08:16:07

The secret lies in combining well-known grapes with the local Sipon variety (or Furmint), known for its high acidity and herbal yet fruity-fresh taste, she added.

This intriguing mix, coupled with the soil, gives Slovenian wines a unique taste that has puzzled wine experts all over the world.

"They say, 'I cannot even think about what this reminds me of because it's so unique'," Puklavec smiled.

P&F makes its wines in a seven-story cellar dug by Puklavec's grandfather and other regional winegrowers on the border with Croatia in 1956.

Across more than 1,100 hectares, the winery grows sauvignon blanc, pinot grigio, welschriesling, traminer, chardonnay, pinot blanc, muscat and sipon.

At the hilltop stand sophisticated presses with inner gas systems to preserve the aromas.

The grape juice is transported through pipes to storage rooms below and, as you walk downstairs into the cellar, you can see barrels and dusty bottles marked with the vintage and the type of grapes.

The most precious drops are found in the archive cellar, which stores 270,000 bottles of the finest wine produced by the winery, including two dozen bottles of 1956 Sauvignon.

Although winemaking is a family tradition, it looked at one point as though the business had completely faltered, Puklavec recalled.

In the 1950s, her grandfather, a small winemaker with "an entrepreneurial vision", joined forces with 40 other growers to create a cooperative in Ormoz, then still an underdeveloped region.

But his early death in 1969 left the company drifting. His son, Vladimir, had moved to Germany and started another business.

Then, seven years ago, "(my father) got a call from an old school friend who told him that the Ormoz wine cellar was for sale," Puklavec recalled.

Editor's Picks
Hot words

Most Popular