The European California: Mostar Wine Country

The sun did us a favor during our initial visit to the Mostar wine region. In the early morning, a group of ten people headed to their first destination — Čitluk. Mr. Josip Brkić, together with his sons, welcomed us with a light breakfast and four wines: a fresh Žilavka, Greda (sur lie Žilavka), Mjesečar and Plava Greda (Blatina barrique). We were especially intrigued by Mjesečar as the only biodynamic wine in the country, but not lacking strong aromas and body for a second. The second destination was the winery Vilinka (village Sretnice), where we experienced a mini-tour guided by Mr. Velimir Ereš, owner and winemaker. Along with lunch (splendid lamb and stew), we were served four wines: Žilavka, Blatina (basic and barrique versions). Barrique versions of these wines are available on the market at the end of every year and sell pretty fast, because of a small production and huge demand. I can only say it is worth the wait every year! Velimir gave us a tour through his vineyards, which were not far from his winery, telling us the details about the fruit, soil and vintages.

After Sretnice, we went to Međugorje to visit the cellar of Mr. Grga Vasilj. We tried four different wines: Žilavka, Blatina (basic and barrique styles) with wonderful prosciutto served fresh on the spot. The final destination was one of the most modern wineries in the country — winery Nuić.
Mr. Nuić conducted us primarily through the Crnopod vineyards and then trough the main part of production and storage. There we had a chance to pair the entire selection of Nuić wines with a variety of cheeses (young and aged) and prosciutto, all local.

The enthusiasm continued at a dinner in the restaurant-tavern Etno Kuća, led by Mr. Ivan Planinić. Pairing Žilavka experienced the climax with date-mussels, eel and salmon trout. Pure hedonism. To conclude, I’ll quote Mr. Grga Vasilj:

The olive is like a mother, the vine is like a wife. If you leave your olives for several years and come back to them, they will be the same. If you leave the vine once and come back, it will be gone, on its own way.

Wine of choice: Vilinka X-Line Red Cuvee 2012, Brkić Mjesečar 2012, Vilinka Žilavka 2014
Means of transportation: car sharing
Accommodation: none

Written by Aleksandar Draganić.

I’m a WSET certified grape juice drinker, and yes, I’m that 1% of people that love their job. I drink wine, write about it, preach about it, even take pictures of it. Find me at @grapenomad

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