Traveling to the south side of Mount Papuk, in search of the best Grasevina.
The most widespread vine in northern Croatia is Graševina, also known as Laški Rizling and Olasz Riesling. There are many theories about it. Who says it's the Italic Risling, brought here directly from the ancient Romans. Who says it originates from the East of the Balkans.
Anyway this summer I was told that the best Grasevina you can drink is that in Kutjevo. A village on the slopes of the Papuk mountain, range on the south side. So this October I traveled to Kutjevo.
I had never been to the south side of the Papuk mountain, since the north side was the one closest to me. The landscape is pleasantly different. The simple countryside is also different from that of the Drava river valley.
When arriving in Kutjevo, one understands, from the insignia outside the houses, that every inhabitant, in some ways, is involved in the production of wine. Every bar and café also sells wine.
As soon as I got out of the car I asked the first person I met: "Where could I buy good wine?" I was told: "Well, I can sell it ..."
Maybe I was lucky? I met Viktor Tepes and drank a delightful Grasevina. I also tasted a wonderful Rhine Riesling. Still richer in flavors.
It is a curious thing that you are in the most famous area for wine, here in north Croatia, and you can not even see a vineyard around you. I asked Viktor, and he brought me to the hills covered with vineyards. During my walk in the vines I could understand that all the producers are a small united community. It was a nice experience.
The harvest was just over and the colors of the vine were changing in yellow and red.
Viktor had just finished with the grape harvest and gave me some fresh white wine. I drank it at home with pork cracklings.
It was a special day.