Whatever you may fancy to do or eat can probably be found on Krk Island
In many opinions Krk is not exactly and island: it has a bridge to the mainland, it is (too) close to Zagreb, many Zagreb residents have weekend homes there so you can’t escape them on vacation, “the sea does not smell as good there as it does in the south,” etc. Convinced that they need to head to Dalmatia or abroad to find peace and wonderful nature, many are quite wrong. They are not aware of all that can be found on the largest Croatian island, within reach of the capital.
The Crna Ovca (black sheep) manifestation recently returned to Krk, specifically Baška Voda, mysteriously absent for seven years. It was revived by the agile Boris Lešić, Director of the Conex Studio, with the support of Baška District and Baška Tourism Board and the main sponsor and partner Valamar Riviera. The intent is to offer interesting musical, but also eno-gastronomy-sports events to extend the tourism season, but also to present to all the riches of nature, cheese, oil, lamb, pasta, cakes and also cycling and hiking paths, even chocolate from this island close to mainland.
The Corinthia Cup regatta took place during that weekend, the children’s football cup Black Lamb, competition in the preparation of lamb stew, photography exhibition of famous London-based photographer Brian Rašić, devoted to David Bowie, then a lecture by Korado Korlević, theatre show I, Father and many street presentations of the heritage and customs of Krk Island.
The main stars of the event were the musicians – Let 3 from Rijeka, TBF from Split and Jinx from Zagreb. Whey they played and tourists walked, hiked or biked or observed the sea, we paid attention to delicacies on the table. Krk lamb is widely known and among the best type of lamb in the land, as the sheep feed here only on aromatic Mediterranean herbs grown on stone and spiced with sea salt. In Bunculuka, the nudist camp near Baška, is an excellent restaurant offering more than a wonderful view of the beach: lamb delicacies and a bountiful selection of local wines.
The Vrbnik Žlahtina is a quality dry white wine of bright yellow to straw yellow colour, gentle aroma and fine characteristic taste, made from the indigenous variety Žlahtina Blanc which grows only in the Krk wine region. The deep and fertile soil, favourable climate and protected position enable the lush growth of all cultures grown in the Vrbnik field. Vines have been grown here for a long time and the variety and wine got their name from the old Slav adjective žlathen, meaning noble. Žlahtina goes best with sheep cheese, all types of fish and seafood and white meat dishes. The foremost winemakers producing it are Ivica Dobrinčić, Ivan Katunar House of Wine, PZ Vrbnik, Katunar Winery, Toljanić family (also owners of the fantastic modern wine hotel Gospoja) and Nada winery.
Believe it or not, but Krk does not offer only wines, but also prosciutto. In the House of Krk Prosciutto in the Vrh village, all the production sections can be viewed in person and the product bought in the place where it is created. The production line is equipped with the most modern technological solution and systems using the benefits of the Krk Bura wind. Krk prosciutto was recently protected with mark of geographic origin. It is a combination of two prosciutto schools. Dalmatian prosciutto is processed with the skin and smoked, Istrian is dried and processed without skin, while Krk prosciutto is a combination of those two types. It is not smoked, but dried and unlike the Istrian, it is processed with the skin.
Krk sheep cheese has high nutritional value and specific taste and scent, belonging to the group of semi-hard and whole milk cheeses from sheep milk, made in many smaller farms. The Magriž family farm from Kornić may be the best known. They have been in cheese production since 1984 with only nine sheep then. Today they have 150 of them. The sheep spend the entire year in the field, eating indigenous herbs of stingy pastures on the south side of Krk. Today they offer various versions of cheeses, all of them from sheep milk. Črni Bodul is a sheep cheese they produce by wrapping it in walnut leaves which gives it specific aroma and colour, along with Green Bodul (with rosemary) and Magriž cheese. They also use other herbs, such as rosemary and sage to wrap the cheeses in their ripening stage to gain various natural aromas.
This year’s 10th Drobnica Fest, the competition of olive oil makers from Krk Island, was held at the end of April. Along with tastings and awards for superior olive oils and the presentation of cheeses of the Krk Cheese Makers Association, there was also a tasting of island specific gastronomy, in focus of the recently begun project, the Menu of Krk Protected Products. Thanks to Drobnica and all efforts undertaken in the previous years in educating olive growers, the crown is the European Union Trademark, a success of the current generation of olive growers, primarily Goran Marević and Siniša Tudor. The latter is the owner of konoba Nono in the island capital Krk.
Their prosciutto is made by his own recipe and their olive oil is made within the konoba as they have their own machine, truly an excellent product, just like the homemade bread from the bread oven. In addition to all the above, Krk has plenty of active honey producers and beekeepers, like the Radenko Tomašić family farm with honey and honey products, Jasna Rimbaldo family farm with jam from figs and excellent chocolate Ateliera Ecostyle, with a phenomenal very dark chocolate designed in the style of the famous Baščanska Plaque.