An open sample I brought back from Korčula Island was foggy. Foggy in a way which points to protein instability. Nothing poisonous, but considering it surely wasn’t intentional, a mistake. A mistake that occurred with the entire set of Bartul 2016 – the Grk grape wine by the Zure family. After some stabilisation with bentonit, also used by “non-interventionists” as the least invasive method solving the problem at hand, it took three more (!?!) stabilisations for the Zure winery to finally decide to leave the vine growing and cellar to their two kung fu sons. As Ivan and Marko are graduates of the winemaking faculty, they will be taking responsibility from the 2017 harvest on.
The responsibility is not small. The Batistić Zure family are so devoted to the Grk variety they make it in four versions. These days they bottled the Sur Lie, and I had the privilege to taste the following:
Zure, Grk, 2016
Price: 100 kn in cellar
After that confusing ‘turbulence’ it really is ‘degraded,’ but still a very good wine… has a good ‘flow, freshness on the palate (maybe slightly harder acids than it should), but “only for a few notes,” lacking in aroma and somewhat ‘flat’, single dimensional, similar to just another Pošip… Nevertheless, I believe in time is could be more balanced in the bottle as it should be. Even as degraded, it is drinkable and better than many. The bad part is that it could have been phenomenal.
Zure, Quinta Essentia, Brut
Price: 600 kn in cellar
Bacon proved to be made to go with sparkling Grk.
As soon as the strong mousses settles in the glass, grapefruit and pear open on the nose. A good and solid scent, seemingly not from around here…
This pear, greener and fresher, lingers also on the palate like the pearling of the bubbles. A prickly texture with such aroma reminds of must. In a good way, in the way chosen champagnes realise a clear cider note. Slight retro nasal bitterness, hints of depth and that softness, with very present yeast aromas, all clearly indicates the classic method. Quite serious. The goal is not only refreshment, there is some complexity.
Goes down quite well. Brut, leaving savour on the palate. Although her first encounter on Korčula did not create high expectations, Martina admits this is a pleasure. “Gets better with every sip.”
For me too. An achievement, yet to show what it is. Although to me it also seems as the last thing that needs a push, if they continue working on the sparkling Grk, they could make something I would blindly include in a serious champagne line up.
Zure, Elysion, 2016
Price: 350 kn in cellar
Finally. The tradition of white Prosecco is something that can only be read about in old books. Very old books.
Behold! I give you… Elysion!
Like an orange peel in cake, the sweet Grk possesses refreshment in sweet grape juice. Dried apricots and acacia honey in the scent and something powerful… raisins.
Certainly ‘contagious’ such as those natural bites. And less filling.
Aroma fullness does not lie on the palate, weight is distributed so the whole refreshes like an orange in the baklava sorbet. Even the ‘bitterness’ elevates the experience of this forgotten recipe.
Attracted like a bee to flower pollen… I buzz with pleasure.
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