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Buzz of the Balkans: Croatia’s white wines

A force of the Adriatic, Croatia’s wines have been steadily drawing more and more attention to the already-popular tourist destination. And perhaps that’s in part because if you want to discover the country’s outstanding wines, then you seemingly have to pay a visit.

Wine exports are indeed limited, as attested by the selection of wines that follows – but the unwavering drive for quality across Croatia’s wine regions in recent years isn’t.

Its best results to date were achieved at the most recent Decanter World Wine Awards, where Croatian wines were awarded three Platinum and 16 Gold medals. But for the past three years the nation has maintained a high standard of success at the competition, specifically for its white wines produced with indigenous varieties.


Scroll down to discover 15 of Croatia’s top-scoring white wines from DWWA 2022


Four-time DWWA judge Simon J Woolf is the new joint Regional Chair for the Balkans region alongside Caroline Gilby MW. He reflects: ‘I remember tasting a much wider variety of wines from Dalmatia last year, and I think historically the wines have been a little more rustic, but there’s an increasing amount of quality and diversity coming out of the region, which was great to see.’

The noteworthy success in 2022 for Croatia’s Coastal and Continental white wines shows that the expert judges are clearly excited about the quality wines coming from the nation – and this buzz is steadily being emulated by the wine drinking public and trade alike.

Difficult to track down, but worth the search, below discover 15 of Croatia’s top-scoring white wines, with more to discover at awards.decanter.com

Buzz of the Balkans: Croatia’s white wines

Coastal

Kozlović, Santa Lucia Malvazija, Istria 2017

Kozlović, Santa Lucia Malvazija, Istria 201797 Platinum
kozlovic.hr
100% Malvasia Istriana
Ripe, vibrant with wonderful complexity. There are dried apricots, tropical fruit, hints of camomile, yellow apples, lemon peel and pronounced minerality giving gorgeous freshness. The structured palate is long and well balanced. Alc 14%

Zure, Reventón Grk Sur Lie, Central & South Dalmatia 2019

Zure, Reventón Grk Sur Lie, Central & South Dalmatia 201996 Gold
zure.hr
100% Grk
An oaky-rich wine that opens with a lovely expression of dried summer fruits, melon and a touch of overripe banana peel. Expressive and charming with a vibrant acid backbone giving sensations of freshness. Alc 13%

Kraljevski Vinogradi, Prestige Pošip, North Dalmatia 2019

Kraljevski Vinogradi, Prestige Pošip, North Dalmatia 201995 Gold
kraljevski-vinogradi.hr
100% Pošip
Deep golden colour. Lovely, layered richness or aromas, marrying ripe tropical and Mediterranean fruits with some well-integrated oak. Dry with delicate floral characters and an amazingly vibrant character and length. Alc 14%

Matić, Afrodita Malvazija Istarska, Istria 2019

Matić, Afrodita Malvazija Istarska, Istria 201995 Value Gold
vinarija-matic.hr
100% Malvasia Istriana
A complex macerated wine with beautiful aromas of yellow flowers and stone fruits. Full of ripe fruits, lovely minerality, well structured, with a round, smooth and long finish. Alc 13.5%

Vivoda, St Euphemia Malvazija Istarska, Istria 2018

Vivoda, St Euphemia Malvazija Istarska, Istria 201895 Gold
vina-vivoda.hr
100% Malvazija Istarska
Concentrated and rich, having aged for 16 months in oak: suggestions of skin contact and a salty-tangy bitterness. Overripe stone fruits with vanilla yoghurt, bitter oranges, herby pineapple, dried apricots and some iodine tang. Long, really fresh and lively. Alc 13.5%

Zure, Grk Bartul, Central & South Dalmatia 2019

Zure, Grk Bartul, Central & South Dalmatia 201995 Gold
zure.hr
100% Grk
Lemon zest and Mirabelle aromatics lead into nectarine, pineapple and a squeeze of grapefruit. Smooth oaky start then yellow flower notes, a hint og banana, and a mineral saltiness, ending with a wet stone and pine accent. Alc 13%

Ante Sladić, Maraština, Dalmatian Hinterland 2021

Ante Sladić, Maraština, Dalmatian Hinterland 202194 Silver
antesladicvino.hr
100% Marastina
Ripe peach, quince and buttered nuts with hints of dry straw and a nice mineral edge with a touch of grippy phenolics. Alc 13%

Vina Laguna, Festigia Malvazija Vižinada Riserva, Istria 2017

Vina Laguna, Festigia Malvazija Vižinada Riserva, Istria 201794 Silver
@vina_laguna
100% Malvazija Istarska
Very delicate, youthful, with white flowers, acacia honey and poached pear. Good fruit concentration, elegant and harmonious. Alc 13%

Cossetto, Prima Luce, Istria 2021

Cossetto, Prima Luce, Istria 202193 Silver
cossetto.hr
100% Malvazija Istarska
Aromatic, with plenty of tropical fruits, yellow fruits, acacia flowers and oriental spices. Dry and structured with some saltiness. Alc 13%

Continental

Dvorska Soškić, Haiku, Plešivica 2019

Dvorska Soškić, Haiku, Plešivica 201997 Platinum
soskic.hr
50% Riesling, 50% Manzoni Bianco
A rounded and well-balanced wine with interesting herbal details and some broad spicy tannins. There is a charming creamy texture that adds to the mouthfeel, giving it generosity and character Alc 13.3%

DeMar, Graševina, Zagorje-Međimurje 2020

DeMar, Graševina, Zagorje-Međimurje 202096 Gold
demar-vina.com
100% Graševina
Haunting aromas of white flowers, spicy jasmine, summer pears and lifted green-lemon notes. The palate grows with sweet-spicy layers of quince, nectarine, jasmine and honeysuckle. Elegant and charming finish with subtle structure. Alc 12.1%

Zlatno Brdo, Gold Cuvée, Baranja 2020

Zlatno Brdo, Gold Cuvée, Baranja 202096 Gold
zlatnobrdo.hr
45% Rajinski Riesling, 20% Chardonnay, 20% Pinot Gris and 15% Traminac
Intense aromatics, leading with ripe stone fruits, honeyed yellow fruits and a propolis character. The fresh, floral-toned palate builds with notes of melon, rose petals and lychee. A very food-friendly, off-dry wine. Alc 14%

Puhelek Purek, Sauvignon, Prigorje-Bilogora 2021

Puhelek Purek, Sauvignon, Prigorje-Bilogora 202195 Value Gold
vinapuhelekpurek.hr
100% Sauvignon Blanc
Aromatic, crisp and refreshing, plenty of grassy-green pepper varietal typicity with additional accents of green apple and citrus fruits on an elegant, quite pronounced mineral palate. Long, dry and vibrant finish, Alc 12.5%

Štampar, Sauvignon, Zagorje-Međimurje 2021

Štampar, Sauvignon, Zagorje-Međimurje 202195 Gold
vinarija-stampar.hr
100% Sauvignon Blanc
Quite intense and spicy, interesting notes of nutmeg, oriental spices and herbs joining fresh green bell pepper and lemon-lime flavours. Finishes dry with good intensity and plenty of character. Alc 12.5%

Dvorska Šoškić, Taste of Terroir Sauvignon, Plešivica 2021

Dvorska Šoškić, Taste of Terroir Sauvignon, Plešivica 2021

93 Silver
soskic.hr
100% Sauvignon Blanc
Very pure and peachy, an intensity of lemons, green bell pepper and some oak presence. Dry with very fresh acidity. Alc 12.8%


Search all DWWA 2022 results


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