A visible raising in wine quality at this year’s Jelsa festival, and a stylish appearance from Ivo Duboković.
One of the things I like about people discovering the wines of Hvar is the fabulous tasting experiences which one would not imagine passing the wineries on the street. From the road, the Tomić winery in Jelsa gives little hint of its Romanesque interior, while Zlatan Otok visitors are always surprised by the storage and tasting room under the sea surface, and Teo Huljić’s lovely old town restaurant in Jelsa has an additional gem not obviously visible in his cosy little konoba.
So too with Croatia’s leading boutique winemaker, Ivo Duboković, whose exact whereabouts I was unsure of until he invited me to a tasting earlier this year. From the outside an impressive enough family house, but there is little sign from the outside of the true treasures contained inside on the ground floor – here is what I was treated to on entering the building the first time.
Ivo is a stylish guy who has done an excellent job producing a highly individual range of wines, and developing a strong brand. It was good to see him in action at the Jelsa Wine Festival this weekend.
This is how the Duboković stand looked at the Jelsa festival, part of the Hvar Wine Association presentation of the island’s quality wines. Despite being called a wine festival, Jelsa’s Fešta Vina has had little to do with exhibiting quality wines, and this year’s dedication of a part of the waterfront where beer sales were banned and quality wine only was on display was a welcome improvement.
For me, however, the best place to try the Duboković range is in the konoba of the family home – it is probably one of the cosiest tastings you will ever experience, and do not forget to try out the excellent range of olive oils as well. To contact Ivo and find out more about his wines, why not follow Duboković wines on Facebook?