Local productsMonday 11 June 2018

The Romanian traditional wine, old and new varieties - "Grasă de Cotnari"

"When you sip the wine from cups remember that you drink from the blood of the vine, the power of the earth and the eternity of the sun." (Alexander the Great)

“Grasă de Cotnari”

“Grasă de Cotnari”

The viticulture is an ancient occupation, and history of the wine interfere with the human history for thousands of years. The Geto-Dacians our ancestors, regarded the wine as a “symbol of happiness”. They have drinking the wine in bull's horns or clay pots and stored it in clay amphoras buried in the ground.

Because their neighboring peoples were attracted of the vineyards, and the locals had made a “passion for drink”, the king Burebista advised by the priest Deceneu decides to crop deforestation.

However, at the arrival of the Romans, there were still vineyards that have been enhanced with new varieties brought by them. The Romans came and with new procedures for cuts and winery. Romans have using the wine for celebrates and religious ceremonies, and as a medicine and nutritious food.

"Grasă de Cotnari", the pearl of vineyard - the first Romanian wine gold-winning at Paris, in the time of the ruler Alexandru Ioan Cuza (1859-1866) One of the oldest wine producing regions in Romania is Cotnari Region, located in Iasi (Moldavia) area with a history of over 2500 years (as the historians say). It is the only vineyard in Romania that kept its traditional range with four known varieties: “Frâncuşa” (dry wine), “Feteasca Albă” (white grape variety), “Tămâioasa Românească” (Romanian demi-sweet wine) and “Grasă de Cotnari” (sweet wine).

There were several opinions about the exact origin of this variety, but most experts believe that it comes from Transylvania (Alba Iulia area) located in the heart of historical Dacia, being brought to Cotnari by the ruler Stephen the Great (1457-1504).

It is one of the most awarded Romanian wines, obtaining over time, dozens of medals at international and national competitions. “ Grasă de Cotnari is the noblest wine and with the most lasting echo among advised consumers from the country and abroad. [...] When is young, this wine has a yellow color with green reflexes; Over time, the color turns to gold patina, so that later, when the wine is laden years appear amber hues, like the autumn color of leaves vine. The aroma, somewhat similar to that of raisins and fulfilled in years to substances produced by noble rot, reminiscent the aroma of dried apricots or beeswax. The taste is complex, it seemed that combines the walnut core with the raisin sweetness, but with a bitter almond hue also" ( "Cotnari Vineyard" scientific work- coordinator Acad. V.D. Cotea)

The oldest wine “Grasă de Cotnari” is from 1956, and it is kept in the thesaurus of the National Bank of Romania. It is sold at auction with prices of over 600 euros.  

Information and photo: www.cotnari.ro   

Elena Radu

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