Pošip

Origin: Korčula, a small island in Croatia

Grown: Around the Dolmatian coast in Croatia, and the nearby islands

Climate: Warm Mediterranean

Soil: Grown in sandy soils and therefore grafting is still not generally necessary in its home region of Smokvica village

Viticulture: Ripens early with a high sugar concentration for grapes picked that early. Can handle a high yield without losing notable quality (exception from norm)

Vinification: Benefits from a colder fermentation, around 12ᵒC to preserve the unique aroma. Needs time on tank or barrel to mature, minimum 9 months. Generally dry but can also be used for Passito style wines (really hard to find). Some will be young and fresh others oak aged and complex

Regional names to look for on label:

  • Smokvica
  • Čara

General Personality:

  • Colour: Yellow, from green to golden hues
  • Aromas: Orange, citrus, apricots (more towards dried fruit), figs. Vanilla and almond aromas tends to come with oak age
  • Taste and Texture: Intense aromas, refreshing acidity, high viscosity, high alcohol and mostly dry
  • Conclusion: Pošip earned a bit of a bad reputation back in the days. Being naturally heavy, if not handled right it can easily become too much. But modern wine making has completely changed these wines. Today they can be elegant, balanced while at the same time maintaining their inherent uniqueness. As the wine industry in Croatia is changing, this is a grape variety you will see more of on the international market and once you have tried it, you will never forget it
  • Future: One more for the long list of grapes that can accommodate more than one style: Never young in the sense that it always needs time to develop, but this development can be done on either oak or tank, and that choice of coarse makes all the difference. Well-made wines aged on oak can often aged further on bottled, some with amazing results

Food pairings:

  • General: Lovely and unique! A wine with a character you will not forget. Amazing on its own and equally as amazing with food. When it comes to food, it is another traditional seafood wine. Recommended to pair with everything from fish to octopus. For me though, it is a bit more unique than that. Since it has such a unique aroma, with a good acidity and full-bodied structure, it is a very versatile wine
  • Obvious pairing: Apricot and Pistachio Salad with Root Veggie Fritters
    Veggies with veggies, and it could not be better! Since Pošip takes a lot of space, a dish that leaves room for that is the perfect match. This salad containing dried apricots and pistachios which reflects the flavour of the wine beautifully, while the fritters, be they fried, or oven roasted brings sweetness and structure to the dish. A tahini dressing enhances the nuttiness of the wine further (if it was aged on oak). A very clean veggie dish, perfect for the warm Croatian climate and this Croatian wine
  • On the wild side: Pistachio Crusted Tofu with Apricot Sause and Steamed Vegetables
    Yes, you might see some similarities between this and the other recommendation, but there is just something with pistachio, apricot and Pošip. It just works so well together, so why break a wining concept. Here with the crispy and soft tofu, together with the sweet, but at the same time (Asian inspired) spice sauce. The apricot sauce is a bit of a balancing act, do not make it too sweet, then it will make the wine bitter, but if too spicy, it will make the alcohol of the wine unbalanced. The path is somewhere in the middle, do not be afraid to let your palate guide you there