Wine of the Week: Croatian Plavac Mali 2007

Plavac Mali Croatian Red WineYet another East European find in Waitrose, this time a bottle of Croatian red wine!  Croatia is renowned for its wine, particularly its red which is hearty, rich and intense in flavour and colour.

Plavac Mali is produced at the Svirče Winery on the island of Hvar, located on the Adriatic.  The vineyard is noted for its quality wines.  This particular bottle is a ripe, smooth red, from the Plavac Mali grape.  This grape variety, indigenous to Hvar, is closely related to Zinfandel and so the wine has a very similar style.

The Plavac Mali is soft enough to drink one its own but makes an ideal pairing to beef dishes such as cevapi served with ajvar.  Alternatively serve with a delicious Sunday lamb roast.  Packed with notes of punchy berry fruits this bottle is simply delicious and would not be a poor accompaniment to an abundant cheese board.

Plavac Mali Hvar 2007

750 ml

13% vol.


Available at Waitrose

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György-Villa, Hungary

gyorgyGyörgy-Villa is a living testament to the culture and spirit of past ages, to its hard-working winemaker’s everyday efforts and its builder’s love for life.  In Budafok these vineyards and orchards used to be watched over from Roman watchtowers.  Then at the end of the fifteenth century the area went into the hands of the Grey Friars of Buda, who dug and built a cellar.  The erection of the building began in 1827 which in addition served as a symbol of the wine region’s prosperity.  It then changed hands several times and took its present shape in 1867 after a wine merchant called György Dõry had it rebuilt for his girlfriend as a Christmas present (they don’t make men like they used to!).

In 1872 the united capital started expanding at an enormous pace and as a result the once flourishing vineyards disappeared. After 1986 the building and the park went under a complete renovation.  The wine specialities of György-Villa come from the Etyek-Buda wine region, famous for its white wines and the Villány wine region, noted for its reds.

The György-Villa Selection with its fine varietal wines is one the most popular wine families in gastronomy. The villa, with its picturesque setting, houses a museum and is a host to series of programs, art evenings and lectures on viniculture.  Lovers of good wines and culture are all welcome to the building, which houses and gave its name to the company’s premium wine family.


Chief Winemaker of György-Villa
In 2002-2003, László Romsics earned a Diploma in Wine and Spirits at the prestigious London Wine and Spirit Education Trust.  The product of intensive study, demanding course work and challenging exams, this international Diploma is recognised as a sign of exceptional professional and academic qualifications in fields relating to wine, winemaking, and other alcoholic beverages. László is the first person in Hungary to earn this Diploma.  In 2003, he was accepted into the Master of Wine programme, which represents the highest level of academic achievement available in the wine industry.

György-Villa Wines
György-Villa Juhfark 2004 – Dry quality white wine
This uniquely Hungarian wine comes from the Pázmánd vineyard. The selective pruning of vines combined with the application of reductive technologies have resulted in a wine that at first is reminiscent of fresh summer fruits, and which subsequently reveals itself to be a richly-flavoured wine with a pleasingly harmonious acidity. Juhfark is a unique gem among the international varietals offered by György-Villa, a Hungarian grape that rewards the hard work that goes into it by offering a singular taste experience. To be consumed at a temperature of 10-12 °C. Goes best with soups, Hungarian cabbage dishes and mushroom dishes.


György-Villa Selection Etyeki Chardonnay – Dry quality white wine
This grape variety, the wine region’’s and perhaps the world’s best-known one, is grown in the vineyards in Etyek. The György-Villa Etyek Chadonnay is a top quality wine with intense aromas and a fruity character which blends with the scent of spring flowers. It has a fresh, pleasant taste. To be consumed at a temperature of 10-12 °C with pastas and fish.

György-Villa Selection Etyeki Sauvignon Blanc – Dry quality white wine
This grape variety, popular and well-know all over the world, comes from the vineyards in Etyek. Thanks to the most up-to-date technologies, it has a spicy scent, rich flavours and lively acidity. Tasting it is like smelling a spice box which reveals new secrets upon each opening. To be consumed at a temperature of 12-13 °C with light poultry and fish dishes, spicy roasts and asparagus.


György-Villa Selection Villányi Merlot – Dry quality red wine
This György-Villa Merlot is made from grapes grown in the Villány wine region. An exquisit full-bodied red wine characterised by a deep red colour, rich aromas and fruitiness. Its scent has a hint of ripe sour cherries and plums. The fruitiness is combined with some mild spiciness. To be consumed at a temperature of
15-16 °C with Hungarian dishes and venison.

György-Villa Selection Villányi Cabernet Sauvignon – Dry quality red wine
Full-bodied red wine made from grapes grown in the Villány wine region. Deep ruby red in colour, velvety, rich aromas and flavours. Cabernet Sauvignon is perhaps the best known and most popular red wine in the world. It is the spiciness of this wine that one notices first. Its rich flavours have a nice long finish. To be consumed at a temperature of 15-17 °C with Hungarian dishes, venison, beef dishes and cheese with rich aromas.

Some of these wines are available in the UK.  To find out where you can pick up a bottle (or case!) get in touch with the kind folks at Myliko who handle the distribution: Email: ; Tel: 0161 736 9500

György-Villa Cellars Ltd.
H – 1222 Budapest, Nagytétényi street 198-202.
Consumer service:
(+36-1) 42-42-650, 42-42-651
Palace Budafok Cellars Ltd.
Tel: (+36-1) 362-16-34
Fax: (+36-1) 362-16-35

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