Bordeaux Meets Croatia – Josić Ciconia Nigra Cuvee
For the past year we have been importing and selling a very unique Bordeaux-style wine from Croatia, produced by the Josić winery. We were thrilled when we read a review of this wine on one of our favorite blogs: Strong Coffee to Red Wine. With permission, we are excerpting Rick Dean’s evocative write-up on one of our very favorite Croatian wines.
Josić 2013 Ciconia Nigra Cuvée (Red Blend), Croatian Danube Region, Croatia
I found this bottle on Topochines.com, an online wine retailer. I was drawn to them because of their selection of wines from Croatia. The shop also carries smaller offerings of wines from Italy, Spain, France, Serbia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and the USA. In 2019 they are adding 8-9 wines from Portugal. The offerings are unique no matter the country of origin, so I’m sure I will be sampling many others as well.
But it was this wine that I most wanted to try. All of the others are from indigenous grapes to Croatia but this one is a blend of recognizable, international grape varieties and I thought that would be a good place to start. The few wines from indigenous grapes are waiting for me in the cooler.
This wine is more accurately an International Red Blend with 35% Cabernet Franc, 35% Syrah, 30% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon. It is the use of Syrah that is not considered a Bordeaux varietal that makes this more of an international blend. Regardless of who’s blend it is, it is flipping delicious.
The color is deep purple. The wine is bone dry with medium-plus acid. The tannins are soft and lingering. The nose is an explosion of aromas. Never have I smelled so much in a wine before. Dried figs predominate followed by bing cherries. Next is the burn of alcohol and a bit of caramel. After a second swirl came sandalwood, sawdust and chocolate covered cherries. And finally, some cooked black fruits. This was such an exceptional smelling experience. I could have kept my nose in the glass for hours.
The flavors on the palate were a bit closed off but enjoyable all the same. Mostly was stewed black fruits like prunes and figs; followed by mild licorice and dark chocolate. The finish was lingering with the soft tannins reasserting themselves.
I am thrilled with this wine and am so glad I chose to make the purchase. I look forward to the wines from Croatia’s indigenous grapes later this winter.
This wine sells for $31.00 on Topochines.com.
If you are not already a subscriber, we strongly recommend that you check out Rick’s blog here: http://strongcoffeetoredwine.com/
Those that are interested in buying this wine can do so at www.topochines.com. Enter discount code Wine10 for a 10% discount on the Josić Ciconia Nigra Cuvee or any of our other wines.
December 22, 2018