Dimitri Breceviv

Piquentum Malvazija NL

  • Colour: Orange
  • Country: Croatia
  • Region: Istria
  • Grape: Malvazija
  • Style: Ripe, Spicy, Hazy
  • Bottle Size: 75cl
  • ABV:


Out of stock

Originally built in 1928, converted into war shelter in the early 90s, and now a winery, this is a tale of a son of a Frenchwoman and an Istrian father, growing native Croatian grapes in an old Mussolini-era concrete water tank. Born in French Basque Country (Jurançon) in the foothills of the Pyrenees, Dimitri Brečević studied oenology in France and then worked at Domaine de Chevalier in addition to working harvests in Australia, New Zealand, Bordeaux, and Burgundy. In 2004 he decided to invest himself in his father’s homeland of Istria near the town of Buzet. The name “Piquentum” is the ancient Roman word for the beautiful hilltop town of Buzet. Dimitri’s arrival falls right in line with the region’s long history of Romans, Goths, Franks, and Bavarians. The Republic of Venice even had a solid 500+ year run. And although briefly a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until the World Wars, it was briefly once again a Province of Italy until 1947 when Yugoslavia was created and Italy ceded the territory. Istria is also the largest peninsula in the Adriatic, Croatia’s westernmost region, and borders both Italy and Slovenia. With only about 1750 square miles, over 280 miles are coastline with 35% covered with oak and pine forests. Indigenous grapes like Malvazija Istarska and Teran coupled with the mineral rich white and red karst soil all seem to echo the salinity of this pristine coastline and the pungency of its truffle-ridden interior.

The climate, red and white soils, everything in Istria is perfect for quality viticulture. Istria is the northern edge of Mediterranean, and in the winter, it can be very cold when the strong bura wind comes from the north. In September, when usually vintage takes place, it is chilly during the night and this helps to maintain nice acidity and aromas in the grapes.

The most significant white grape is the Istrian Malvasia, which occupies approximately two thirds of the entire grapevine plantations extending over this area. The most typical red grapes are Teran, and its curious relative – Refošk (more about these below). With currently 4.5 ha of vineyards: Malvasia 60%, Teran 20%, Refosco 20%, Dimitri’s goal is to keep competition high, work the land by hand, and get roots penetrating deeper and deeper into the alternating ferrous-rich red and white flysch soils that define Istrian terroir.  

In contrast to the iron rich red soil of Terzolo, Štoka, and Coronica, the grapes for the Malvazija Blanc are planted in the predominately flysch-rich white soil unique to Istria. The wine was then fermented in stainless steel after 6-8 days on the skins resulting in a wonderfully fine-grained texture and straw yellow colour.

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Piquentum Malvazija NL
Out of Stock