Proprietor: Alen Bibić
Country Location: Croatia
Today it is impossible to talk about the Mediterranean wine region of Skradin without mentioning Alen Bibić. In many ways, he is to credit for putting Skradin back on the wine map
The appellation. The Bibich Winery is located in the hills of Skradin, 5 miles east of the idyllic port city of Šibenik along Croatia’s island speckled coast. Across the Adriatic from Italy, it is roughly in line with the wine hills of Tuscany. The vineyards are around the tiny village of Plastovo. They are clearly defined by the primitive looking rock pile/walls that are the result of clearing the fields for vines. What plots of soil can be found are just the broken down bits of the solid limestone hills. Although an incredibly picturesque part of Croatia, it was also hard hit during the Yugoslav wars of the early 90’s.That was the past, enterprising young wine makers is the future.
The people. It is impossible to talk about the Mediterranean wine region of Skradin without mentioning Alen Bibić. In many ways he is to credit for putting Skradin back on the wine map. A life long native he learned to make wine from his grandfather. Today it is his mission to bring the wines of Skradin to international prominence. By doing so he hopes to sustain the long tradition of the indigenous white Debit and red Zinfandel relatives Babic, Plavina and Lasin, unique to his home.
Alen also has a taste for Grenache and Shiraz, of which he makes surprisingly Rhone-ish examples. Despite the quality of his wines and the acclaim they have received Alen believes that the surface is just being scratched.
In the vineyards. Alen eats his lunch in the shade of the same tree he would as a child when helping his grandfather in the prized Lucicia vineyard planted long ago. Head pruned old vine Debit, it is the source of the premier white wine of Bibich and named after the vineyard. Located in the hills around the tiny village of Plastovo, Lucicia and Alen’s many other small plots benefit from the dry, sunny conditions that demand little spraying against molds. At night low pressure created by the nearby Adriatic draws cool air from the easterly mountains which dramatically reduces temperatures and imparts a freshness to the wines. Most vineyards are head pruned. All are low yielding between 1 and 2 kilo per plant. Harvesting is done by hand.
In the cellar. Grapes are delivered to the winery in small plastic crates. With the exception of the the fresh Debit all Bibich wines are fermented with native yeast, sometimes in stainless steel, sometimes in barrique and aged in barrel for 12 months or more. Interestingly, Alen ages his white R5 Reserva and red R6 Riserva in American oak barrique. While unexpected, it integrates into the wines beautifully much like the white and red wines of Rioja.
Read the report of a visit of the Bibich estate in Skradin in our blog.
Ambra is a sweet wine made in the style of Dalmatian Prošek. It is typically produced from white grapes much in the style of the more fa... more >
Only two bottles left in stock! Much in the tradition of white Bordeaux or Rioja R5 is a warm climate barrel aged white wine of mixed ... more >
Sorry, Sold out! It has been suggested that Debit is related to Italy’s Trebbiano. Similarly it can produce short lived, innocuous w... more >
The Rhone based wines Alen excels at producing harkens back to a style that sadly is increasingly rare even in France. Alen farms an old ... more >
Sorry, sold out! Lučica is Alen’s homage to his grandfather. The fruit is sourced from the single vineyard of old growth Debit his ... more >
The lithe, mineral R6 is a roughly equal parts blend of Babić, Plavina, and Lasin, native red varieties each somehow related to Californ... more >