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Sip Croatian Wine on the Island of Korčula

Ellie Swain

Contributor

The Croatian island of Korčula is filled with stunning natural beauty and postcard-perfect landscapes. From a crumbling ancient old town to sparkling ocean and sleepy bays and beaches, visitors are in for a treat. While Korčula is a known holiday destination, it isn’t anywhere near as crowded as other Croatian islands like the buzzy party spot of Hvar. That means you can enjoy the serene magnificence of the island without hordes of travellers.

Aside from its beauty, Korčula is best known for its mouth-watering local wines. While it’s possible to discover wine on every Croatian island, Korčula offers the very best in the country and is home to delicious varietals that you can’t find anywhere else in the world.

If you enjoy sampling fine local wines surrounded by jaw-dropping scenery under the warm sun, then a visit to Korčula is a must-do. Get ready to discover what makes wine from Korčula so special, along with some of the best wineries on the island.

The Wine Varietals from Korčula

Korčula is best known for its tongue-tantalizing white wines. However red wine lovers mustn’t fret, you’ll find delicious red varietals on the island too.

The most popular varietal of the island’s famous Lumbarda wine region is GRK. This indigenous white grape variety grows exclusively in the sprawling vineyards of the Lumbarda wine region, and it cannot be found anywhere else across the globe.

GRK’s origins trace back to the third and fourth centuries BC when the Greeks took their vines over to Korcula. GRK is known for its slightly bitter aftertaste and the fact that it only has female flowering parts.

Posip is another white grape varietal native to Korčula. However, Posip mainly grows in the island’s green valleys of Cara and Smokvica.

Similar to GRK, Posip is a dry wine with crisp acidity. The varietal was discovered in the mid to late 19th century, and it was one of the first white wines to be protected under Croatian law.

While these are two of the island’s most renowned grape varietals, visitors are spoilt for choice when it comes to sipping fine wines under the beaming Croatian sun.

The usual time for grape harvest on Korčula is mid to late August into September, depending on when the grapes are ripe, juicy, and ready to pluck. Weather also plays a significant part in harvest time because the grapes require plenty of sun without too much rain. However, this isn’t usually a problem, as Croatia benefits from glorious warm and sunny weather during the summer months.

Keeping with tradition, all grapes are handpicked on the island. This is usually by the family of the winery, local friends, and sometimes visitors to the island.

The best way to taste and learn more about the history and processing of the wines from Korčula is to embark on a wine tasting tour. Every winery on the island is unique, and a tasting trip introduces you to some of the best venues to sample high-quality varietals.

To make your wine tour even more memorable, you may like to incorporate other activities into the trip, such as meandering or cycling along the verdant vineyards. Now, let’s get to know some of the island’s best wineries.

Vitis Winery

Vitis Winery, formerly known as Winery GRK, is a family-run business in the heart of Lumbarda village. The winery offers tastings with or without food surrounded by craggy mountains, sprawling green vineyards, and striking, orange-roofed houses. As you can guess, the region’s famous GRK grape varietal is the winery’s most popular bottle.

All the delicious wines, liquors, and food are entirely homemade, leaving your tongue and stomach satisfied. Consider visiting Winery GRK just before noon to watch the glowing orange sun melt into the vineyards that seem to stretch back for miles. 

Popić Winery

Another family-owned winery in Lumbarda is Popić Winery, serving GRK along with other varietals for visitors to taste and buy.

A peaceful and tranquil winery, this is the perfect spot to sit down and admire the dazzling country views while sipping on fine local wine. The owners running Popić Winery are passionate about their wine-making production and efforts, and you’re sure to feel their enthusiasm when you pop into this quaint family-run joint.

Lovric Winery

Lovric Winery is yet another family-operated business situated in the rolling wine region of Lumbarda. For generations, the winery has crafted fine GRK and Plavac Mali wines using a combination of tradition, modern technology, and oenology. The latter refers to the science and study of wine-making.

The winery and tasting room are found on the ground floor while the rest of the venue operates as a restaurant and hotel. The roomy, bright, and airy restaurant is ideal for large groups. For those visiting in bigger numbers, the restaurant also works as a sit-down tasting area.

Arrange a private tour with the owners and witness the wine-making process up close before sipping on mouth-watering wines over a scrumptious plate of regional cheese and olives.

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