The Slavonia and Podunavlje Wine Region

The Slavonia and Podunavlje Wine Region

The region of Slavonia and Podunavlje, the land of white grape varieties dominated by Welschriesling, is characterised by large areas covered with vineyards and wines of increasing quality.

 

Slavonia and Podunavlje form one of the four wine regions in the Republic of Croatia, covering the area from the towns of Virovitica and Daruvar in the west to the Danube and Baranja in the east. The region is characterised by large vineyard-covered areas that produce the highest volume of wines in the entire country, and its winegrowing tradition dates back to ancient Roman times. Slavonian wines have an excellent ratio of price to quality. The best ones are produced from grapes grown in the areas of Venje and Mitrovac in the Kutjevo wine country, as well as in Erdut, Belje, Srijem, Daruvar, Baranja and Ilok. For decades, Slavonia has been dominated with white grape varieties, and even now its vineyards grow different international varieties popular around the world – Pinot gris and blanc, Rhein Riesling, Chardonnay, Traminer, Sauvignon and so on... but for years, Welschriesling has held the throne.

 

Although another international white variety, Welschriesling production in this wine region has reached a level where many associate it with Slavonia and consider it indigenous to the area. It is the most widespread and popular of all the grape varieties grown on Croatian soil, and winemakers use it to produce a whole host of different styles of wines for every occasion. Although Slavonia was once a place where you could find red varieties such as the Blue Frankish, Kadarka and Portugieser, these varieties have only recently seen a rise in popularity in the region, along with Pinot noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Zweigelt. There was a time when large areas covered in cultivated vineyards did not guarantee high-quality wines, but in recent years, winemakers have worked diligently to bring their production to a whole new level. Now there are several new, small-volume producers in Slavonia and Podunavlje who are turning their grapes into award-winning wines.