“Poor” 2013 and 2014 Harvests of Terrano Made its Future Lovely

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A great sparkling is the next step in the development of Istrian Terrano wine which successfully survived two very difficult years: 2013 almost destroyed it politically, in 2014 the weather conditions were so poor that a good red wine from the variety was almost impossible to make.

Winemakers hence vinified it to a rose and many exported it to Italy at the end of winter to plants where still wine is made into sparkling wine within two months, through the method of long fermentation in tanks. This is natural method, not as valued as the classical, where bubbles are created through long fermentation in the bottle lasting around nine months. Ambitious winemakers keep them on yeasts up to two or three years, noticeable with every sip.

Bubbles are smaller, gentler on the palate and more abundant, but such sparklings are significantly more expensive. There were, after the “poor” 2014, some sparkling Terranos made with both methods and all were consumed with joy. The base wine for sparklings has to have pronounced acids. In Champagne it is so bitter it is hard to swallow. This barely drinkable liquid later gains a wonderful, or even opulent taste.

Pronounced acids are a Terrano quality, the natural precondition to produce sparklings is there. Almost everything else is up to the winemaker who will prepare grapes and the oenologists who will make sure nothing goes bad. Excellent experiences from 2014 simply demand that, after some refreshing ones, a large sparkling wine is made from the variety which the unusual and unreasonable politics of our neighbours attempted for a year to chase it from the vineyards, cellars, glasses and hearts.

All in all, the Slovenians protected the name Kras Terrano in 2004, with the European Union forbidding us since 2013 to sell wine under that variety name. Realizing it is impossible to protect the name of a variety, they have found a compromise allowing Istrian winemakers to use the name Croatian Istria Terrano. Slovenians are angry at the decision, instead of being angry at themselves for not producing Terranos such as those made by Benvenuti, Coronica, Tomaz, Dobravac, Zigante, Fakin, Arman, Degrassi, Geržinić, Trapan…

Croats were angry with the former decision and fought it by making excellent Terranos. This was the proper way. Although the EU decision the Terrano name must be written in smaller letters than the name of the region, problems the winemakers experienced in the last years are another reason for the Terrano wine quality to be higher. And Slovenians should accept the fact they are wrong to claim for decades that Kras Terrano is made from Refošk variety. Genetics proved in 2013 they also cultivate the Terrano variety, published in Austria in 2014. So those two years were not all too bad for the Croatian Istria Terranos.

For the original and more from Vino.hr blog on wine, click here.


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