Over a summer, two travelers drink their way through the wines of Mediterranean Europe
Stanojević and BleušTwo more of the smaller producers on Korčula are Bleuš and Kunjašić. They are both located around Smokvica and like many wine makers of this size, very tricky to find. You see, their cellars look just like any other house on the street and it’s not until you go inside that you see a whole wine making operation spread out from behind the old doors. It also makes it impossible to just drop by for a tasting or a visit, since you need to know someone who knows someone to call them and actually meet you as was the case when we went to Bleuš. But, they will always make it worth the hunt by rewarding you with good wines and great hospitality.
Bleuš is a tricky name, since it really is the Stanojević Family that produces the wine now. Well, actually, it still is the Bleuš family (which they believe is really of French origins), but there were just two daughters to inherit the winery after their father passed away and it still is the custom for it to be the man’s family name on the wine, even if it wasn’t his family that originally produced it. But, this is changing as you’ll see Stanojević Family on the bottle, but with a Bleuš title. A tad bit confusing, but such are the customs and the cultural changes that are slowly happening.
We tasted the 2006 Pošip from Bleuš. It had spent seven months aging in stainless steel and had light cherry aromas to the nose along with a bit of peach and apricot. Overall, there was an abundance of spring aromas blossoming out of it and it opens up quite a bit as it breaths. The body is dry with considerably lighter tones to it that pass in to the finish of the wine.
When it came time to visit Kunjašić, that proved even more difficult as we always seemed to catch him while he was out in the field and much like Bleuš, he was one of those wine growers that you had to be shown exactly where his cellar was in order to find it. Kunjašić produces a number of other wines that we were not able to taste, which in the end left us thinking to the next time we visit, because there is always a next time in Croatia. But thankfully, local pride was our friend and we were able to taste his 2005 Pošip at a restaurant in Korčula Grad. It opened up like most of the Pošips on the island, but had a bit more fruit, placing it somewhere between what Bleuš does and what Čara does.
It will be interesting to watch how both of these wineries progress, especially Bleuš, seeing as how this is their very first vintage.