Outstanding wineries with a tourist offer

A winegrower, a sommelier, and a chef - all in the same cellar. Presenting a diverse offer that will satisfy even the most demanding of pleasure-seekers.

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Pairing food and wine is one of the most challenging tasks of sommeliers and chefs, as winemakers did their job at the point when wine was bottled and prepared for the market. Experience is even more intense if you enjoy yourself in an authentic location, so there is no wonder that from Slavonia to central Croatia, Istria and Kvarner to Dalmatia, there is an increasing number of places where winemakers have decided to extend their offer and in addition to wine, their cellars and tasting rooms offer meals, mostly authentic, made by old recipes, to their guests, and almost all have accommodation facilities.

In Ilok, in the easternmost of Croatia, one comes to the Stari Podrum Restaurant to taste superb, archival wines of the Ilok cellars where the river fish, the Slavonian kulen and domestic cheese perfectly fit in the company of top Graševina wines, and authentic desserts match the royal Ilok Traminac . At the Principovac property nearby, you can relax with picnic baskets, driving a bicycle, jogging or walking along the wine routes or practicing golf.

Stari podrum. Photo: Dusko Marusic/PIXSELL

On the way to Zagreb, there is a wine-and-dine nook, Zlatna dolina, and Kutjevo. With great Graševina wines of the Kutjevo wineries, Krauthaker and Galić, at Vincekovo, the hosts prepare specialties of Slavonia – vineyard stick with sausage and bacon scewered up or the vineyard kebab of Požega, and all year-round, the Akademija Graševine Restaurant offers other Slavonian delicacies and wines of Kutjevo.

Photo: Zlatko Burivoda; Kutjevo d.d.

At the winery and restaurant klet Bolfan Vinski Vrh in Zagorje, there is no menu because the meals are prepared depending on the availability of seasonal ingredients, however, do not miss yellow vegetable soup with Bolfan Rhine Riesling, meals with buckwheat porridge as well as domestic salt Zagorje strudel with one of fifteen biodynamic wines. After the meal, you can take a walk on tame hills of Zagorje, ride a bike, try archery or chase a horse in a light trot.

Klet Bolfan. Photo: Tomislav Miletić/Pixsell

On the slopes of Plešivica, the Krešimir Ivančić’s winery is frequented for some of the great Griffin sparkling wines from Portugieser, and at the foothill, near Jastrebarsko, people visit the property of Kolarić where one should try homemade turkey with dumplings, with a choice of twenty still and sparkling Coletti wines mostly from indigenous varieties. The Earl Erdödy’s summer mansion, built in 1656, is located in the neighbourhood, at the foothill of Japetić Mt., where you can continue to enjoy the panoramic view with a glass of wine.

The summer mansion of Earl Erdödy.

In Istria, Malvasia and Teran is a must: hedonists have the luxurious Relais & Chateaux wine hotel and the Meneghetti Restaurant in Bale and the traditional Istrian cuisine at their disposal, while truffle lovers do not miss to stop in Livade, at the JRE Restaurant, which has the Michelin recommendation of Giancarlo Zigante, the holder of the Guinness record for the Millenium, the largest white truffle found in the world. One can possibly go truffle picking and walk in nearby forests with a guide and a dog...

Photo: Duško Marušić/PIXSELL

Photo: Duško Marušić/Pixsell

Photo: Duško Marušić/Pixsell

On the way to the south, the Kvarner flagship wineŽlahtina as well as the lesser known Sansigot and Trojišćina are worth trying with specialties of the island of Krk in the Kuća vina Katunar (Katunar Wine house), and in the Nada Tavern and Winery in Vrbnik boasting a breathtaking sea view.



On Pag, in order to try the Pag cheese, lamb tripe and authentic Gegić you should stop at the Boškinac – a winery, hotel and JRE restaurant with the Michelin recommendation whose wines were described as monstrously good by Anthony Bourdain, who was afterwards also delighted at the Alen Bibich’s Winery, in whose basement's 12-course supper he rated as one of the best restaurant meals ever! Between Pag and Skradin, the MasVin agricultural cooperative offers extra virgin olive oil, premium wines and figs, both dried and fresh ones.

Boškinac. Foto: Dino Stanin/Pixsell

Boškinac. Foto: Dino Stanin/Pixsell

The Plenković winery in Zavala on the island of Hvar offers the wine label Zlatan Otok at the restaurant Bilo Idro, complementing fresh lobsters and crabs from the sea basin, whereas one can relish Dubrovnik pašticada, rožata and fresh Ston mussels with the top Plavac Mali at the “stone beauty” Korta Katarina on Pelješac.

In the end, the Zure Agrotourism at Lumbarda on Korčula is a place where one can enjoy the excellent authentic Grk and Pošip with freshly caught fish, prosciutto and domestic breed pork bacon.