Whilst recently in Croatia, I realised that they took their winemaking seriously. Everything I tried was very palatable and rather Italian in style. Little did I know that they were more like the Italians than I had imagined…
Halfway through our break we stumbled upon a family who were making wine out of their garage!
This wasn’t just the kind of home wine-making kit you get in the UK. This was real grapes, with proper stainless steel vats (albeit in miniature).
As soon as they noticed these crazy tourists taking photos of their garage, we were instantly ushered closer and asked to taste their previous vintage with them (at 10am in the morning!).
Out came a re-used plastic water bottles which the previous year’s vintage was stored in – to say I was apprehensive about tasting this ‘garage’ wine was an understatement!
Thankfully, and rather surprisingly, it was really good. Full of red fruit character, especially strawberries, with a slightly savoury edge. In fact, it was very similar to the flavours you might expect from a Beaujolais – a lovely, light and fruity red.
According to our kind host, Božo, they make around 100 litres of the stuff per year. “Just enough for the family to enjoy – and any of our guests too.” He joked.
They used a combination of international grapes like Merlot and Cabernet, with some local grapes like Plavac too.
Ever since I have had a very strong desire to buy some steel vats and make my own garage wine!