Župa, part III: Ivanović Winery (Vinarija Ivanović), Aleksandrovac

This is not a big winery, but its Prokupac may be found in every self-respecting restaurant in Belgrade: Most probably, because it expresses in a very classical way the virtues of the variety. Prokupac might be this among autochthonous red varieties in the Balkans, which has the biggest potential to give in the future very noble wines. For those, who would like to explore its taste, I recommend a bottle of Ivanović’s one, which is also a great value for money, costing here around $9.

Also at this winery, you can find a charming Tamjanika. Its usual spices: incense, cinnamon, and basil, are complemented by pineapple and strawberry notes. And there is also a rosé, which starts to be a must for every Serbian producer, as the local palates are becoming more and more fond of this style. Ivanović’s one is made from Prokupac and Pinot Noir grapes, and maybe as homage to the latter French variety the wine is called “Petite Rose”, although also the Serbian variant would have sound tantalizing: “Mala Ruža”. As many rosés in Serbia, this wine is produced in a style reminding of the traditional clarets. Meant is a very dark rosé, not the common English synonym for Bordeaux reds.

In the family vineyards, also Riesling is grown and, in good years, grapes are used for a desert late-harvest “Zanos”. The name could be translated as “ecstasy” or “trance” and describes pretty much the beautiful honey freshness, which is a perfect company for either pate, or traditional Serbian (and generally Central-European) cake: strudel (in Serbian: štrudla or savijača), usually with poppy seeds or blended walnuts.

The cellar is situated under Mr. Ivanović’s house, which is protected as a historical monument. There is also a small and rustic tasting room in the garden. It was where I’ve learned from Mr. Ivanović that Serbian has a term perfectly expressing the meaning of terroir, as we understand it nowadays: including soil, climate, and human element. This word is “podneblje”, which basically means “under the sky”. It is usually translated as “climate”, but in the broader meaning, used in the Serbian wine world, this describes everything that may be found “under the sky” in certain area: soil, microclimate, relief, flora and fauna, people with their culture and knowledge…

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