Romanian Wine and Grape Varieties

Tuesday, June 26th, 2007 at 12:00 am

romania wineRomanian wine production has a long history that dates back to three thousand years ago where it was first introduced by the Greeks who came to the country by way of the Black Sea.

The favorable geographical location of the country, with its close proximity to the Black Sea as well as the fertile local soil and favorable climate, made wine production as a source of wealth for Dacia (the ancient name for Romania) as more and more vineyards thrived and wine production grew.

Foreign visitors to the country during the middle ages, such as the Saxons were able to bring along with them a number of Germanic grape varieties that further added diversity into the vineyards of Romania. Eventually, they were replaced by grapes that were widely grown around Western Europe.

Today, Romania is considered as one of the world’s largest wine producers with about 545,000 tons of wine produced annually. A lot of wine buyers have been attracted to buying wine in Romania chiefly because they are cheaper to buy, both as vineyards as well as wines, as compared to other wine producing countries in Europe. As of 2003, Romania has become the twelfth largest wine producing nation in the world.

Romania has a wide selection of fine quality wines produces by its different wine producing regions. All in all, Romania has seven wine regions that grow the grapes and produce Romania’s wines. They are Cotnari, Murfatlar, Odobesti, Recas, Tarnave, and Vanju Mare. These wine regions grow a number of grape varieties that make its way into the different wineries and become what are now the well known wines of Romania.

What has made Romanian wines worth mentioning is that it has grown grape varietals that have been produced into fine wines that get into the palates of many appreciative wine consumers. One of the grapes that Romanian vineyards usually cultivate is the Feteasca Alba which is a fairly old grape variety that is being grown in most wine regions in the country. Wines made from this grape are usually dry or semi-dry and have well balanced acidity and sweetness.

Another grape variety widely grown in Romania is the Feteasca Regala which originated from Transylvania and produces wines that range from table wines to high quality ones. Another variety that can be seen grown in Romania is the Grasa de Cotnari which also has been one of the most traditional grape varieties being grown in Romania.

What makes this variety unique is that they are being picked only after they have shriveled and attacked by insects known as botrytis cinerea which helps produce sweet wines that have high sugar content.

Other grape varieties being grown in many Romanian vineyards include the Busuioaca de Bohotin, the Bebasca Neagra as well as the Tamaioasa Romaneasca as just among the better known and popular grape varieties. Other grape varieties are also grown in order to help increase the production of wines on a commercial level and satisfy the growing demand for quality Romanian wines.