Over a summer, two travelers drink their way through the wines of Mediterranean Europe
The port of Supetar.
Hrvoj Baković is a tad tricky to find. It’s true that he’s in one of the biggest towns on Brač, Supetar, but we were on the lookout for a full winery and instead found his home. He was a little surprised by our tenacity (as were we) but he was very welcoming nonetheless, inviting us in for a little chat.
Hrvoj and his wine.
He’s quite a character who worked for many years as a sailor in New Zealand to save some money to start his own winery, before returning back to his homeland. Once there, he bought five hectares of land and worked to build up his winery. He started at something of a disadvantage because while his family has a history of growing grapes, they didn’t have a history of making wine.
None of this has held back Hrvoj and he has learned a great deal about the climate of Brač in a short time. He knows what grapes work and what don’t. He is one of the few wine makers who has tried other grapes only to fall back on Plavac Mali because the grapes can handle the climate the best. Others varietals grow fine for some time and then just dry up suddenly without warning. His vines are on the south side of the island, getting regular sun as well as the sun which reflects off the water, making for a lot of light on his vines. There is another place this happens and that is in the Dingač region on Pelješac. How does this effect the taste? A great deal as we found out.
Vineyards of Murvica
And this is why Baković was such a surprise to us. For one, we weren’t able to taste his wine on the spot and had to take a bottle of Plavac Murvica 2003 with us for later. Once opened, the aromas were fantastic. There was a sweetness to the nose that reminded us of, yes, that’s right, Dingač Plavac Mali. But, his Plavac built upon this with nice plum aromas. The body was a lot of fun and lovable. The oak tones were very subtle and the finish was clean. It’s a wine that we highly recommend for eating with red meats. There is a touch of dryness to the finish develops in a way that is perfect. It is an astounding example of how good Plavac Mali can be and how a perfect Plavac should taste.
With some Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon vines coming in to production over the next two years, Hrvoj is one to watch and the reason that so many critics in his homeland rave about his wines.