Over a summer, two travelers drink their way through the wines of Mediterranean Europe
Their very nice brochure
Another interesting small wine producer that we found on the Pelješac peninsula was Bartulović, in the little village of Prizdrina near Potomje. We met Mario Bartulović, the manager of the winery located in his beautiful 500-year-old family house. His father Teo started producing in 1989 after having spent some time in Italy. They had to play a bit of catch up initially due to the long pause in production and until 1996 they were using a 220-year-old grape press.
The old wine press
With a small production of around 20,000 liters a year, Bartulović produces three red wines, a white, a rosé and a few bottles of a very exclusive dessert wine, a Prošek. One of their reds, the Puncta, is a limited vintage biodynamic wine, made of Plavac Mali grapes grown on an ecologically tested vineyard, free of artificial supplements and chemicals.
We tasted the white Rukatac from 2005, with 12.5% alcohol, made of a local varietal that is also known as Maraština in the Konavle region. It had a very light nose but a bit of a sharp taste at the beginning, although it became smoother after getting a bit of air. We also tasted the Bartul red also from 2005, which is made of a blend of Plavac Mali grapes from 9 different vineyards. With a dark ruby red color and a thick, meaty nose, Bartul is a dry, full-bodied wine, with a bit of a cinnamon and licorice flavors and a spicy finish. It goes well with dark meat, especially venison, and naturally, Dalmatian smoked ham–pršut.
Bartul Plavac Mali
Mario Bartulović, like other young wine makers in Croatia, has brought a lot of new ideas to the family winery and an entrepreneurial spirit to raise the profile of his wines. In contrast to the older generation of Croatian wine makers, craftsmen following a centuries old tradition who didn’t feel the need to promote their wines because their high quality spoke for itself, the younger generation taking over are equally concerned with the reputation of their wines and in promoting them outside of their region. Thus, Mario Bartulović ordered a modern, sleek, re-design of the labels of his wines, started tailor-made wine tours of the Pelješac peninsula called “Meet the Peninsula”, and he has opened a restaurant in his winery which offers home-cooked Dalmatian specialties paired with his wines.