The Slovenia Times

Slovenia Unique in Wine Diversity, Boasts High Quality Wines


"We've witnessed an above-average quality of samples and there were hardly any eliminations," Wondra, who chaired the oenology commission, told the press after the event that took place between 23 and 25 July.

Slovenia also boasts an extraordinary diversity of wines due to favourable geographic features and climate as well as the use of state-of-the-art technology.

"Slovenians can produce any wine in the world. Today it would be hard to tell Australian rose from our own," Wondra said, adding that Slovenia also produced top quality sparkling wines.

Some 610 wines by 200 producers, mostly from Slovenia but also from Austria, Croatia, Italy, Macedonia, Slovakia, Serbia and Spain, were assessed in Gornja Radgona in July. As many as 296 silver, 112 golden and 34 big golden medals were conferred. Ten wines were declared champions.

The Štajersko and Prekmurje regions in the north east in particular have very diverse wines, because they have "extraordinary conditions for developing different aromas" due to large differences in daily and night temperatures.

The western Primorsko region on the other hand is known for its "richness of extracts", while the south-eastern region of Dolenjsko is "somewhere in between", according to Wondra.

Since there are so many different sorts of wine in Slovenia, it is difficult to speak of flagship wines here. "When I was in Chile, I drove 300 kilometres from one wine cellar to another to drink the same wine. But here you can go from one hill to another and taste different wines."

This indeed poses a bit of a problem when it comes to selling a particular sort of wine, but it is what Slovenia is unique in, Wondra believes.

Winegrowers are nowadays mostly focusing on growing single wine sort and are trying to promote their brand.

While wines made from a specific sort of grapes typically carry the name of the grape, those made out of several sorts of grapes usually carry the name of the wine growing region, the town or the wine cellar.

Wondra said last year's harvest was of particularly high quality because of favourable weather conditions.

"The flowering phase came very quickly, and the ripening process in July and August saw plenty of sun and little precipitation, which enabled the grapes to ripe beautifully," the wine expert said.

The outlook for this year's harvest is also very good at the moment, even though drought might prove to be a problem, as Slovenian winegrowers lack irrigation systems.

"A vine needs about 300 litres of water throughout its life span. If there's no rain, the harvest is automatically poorer."

In recent years, organic wines are also becoming increasingly popular in Slovenia. This year's wine assessment in Gornja Radgona showed that organic wines also achieve very high quality.

Such wines contain no added sulphur and typically have a strong scent of dry fruit, more intense colour and higher alcohol content than other wines.

About 100 million litres of wine is produced in Slovenia annually, while statistics show that average annual consumption per inhabitant stands at 38.6 litres.

Slovenia has three wine growing-regions and 14 wine-growing districts, boasting a total of around 15,000 hectares of vineyards with grape output of 130,000 tonnes.


More from Nekategorizirano