Vin de rosa is an aromatic dessert wine made from dried grapes which are then pressed: it is a sweet wine with a characteristic rose scent, which is where its name is derived from.
The area where it is produced in includes the southern end of the Istrian peninsula. This area is characterised by soils and hills that guarantee excellent conditions for the growing of grapes. The peninsula is bathed by the warm Adriatic Sea, which allows for a Mediterranean climate.
The oldest known mention of Vin de rosa is by the Italian poet and writer Gabriele D’Annunzio, who in his short story “The martyrdom of Gianluca” from 1886 writes of the sailors who sailed the coasts of Istria: “Some even fondly remembered the Vodnjan wine, which has the scent of roses, and the fruit of the island.” In other historical documents, its significance is underlined in important moments in the personal and collective history of the people of Vodnjan: traditionally it was only consumed on important occasions such as weddings and births or during Christmas or Easter. It is still common to give children a bottle of Vin de rosa when they are born, this bottle will often be opened at their wedding. In some cases, the bottle is walled up until the occasion arises. When it is time, the wall is then demolished, and the bottle is drunk in the company of others.
Vin de rosa can be made using dried grapes from different varieties such as: Istrian Malvasia, Rosé Muscat, White Muscat and Yellow Muscat, and may be made with the vinification any single variety or as a blend.
The grapes are cultivated completely dry: they are not irrigated at all, but the soil is subjected to two annual interventions where spontaneous flora that would compete for water and minerals are removed. All of the processes to do with their cultivation, from the eventual thinning to the winter pruning are carried out by hand. Fertilisation is carried out by exclusively using mature manure from local farms.
The grapes are harvested in September and the best grapes are chosen to be used for the production of Vin de rosa. The healthiest bunches with the most spread out berries are placed in boxes and then on racks to dry in ventilated rooms for a period of about three months. When the bunches have lost more than half of their weight, the grapes are pressed in a special press which as known as a strucolo. The must that is made is put into demijohns so that the typical hints and aromas of the wine are able to be extracted through a slow fermentation process. After a year, this is filtered and bottled, the wine will continue to evolve in the bottle. Vin de rosa is bottled before Christmas in order to finish the year off well and to start the new one in a good way.
The colour varies from different shades of amber with golden yellow reflections and pink to ruby red with red brick reflections. It has a complex and layered fragrance, which is dominated by dried fruits, with notes of nutmeg, flowers, honey, chocolate, caramel and hazelnut as an aftertaste.
Peroj and Galižana districts of the municipality of Vodnjan and the municipality of Fažana - southern Istria
Intesa Sanpaolo Charity Fund - "Slow Food in action: young people and the future of the food system in Croatia" project
European Union - LIFE Program
Vladimir Nazor, 25
Azienda agricola Burin
Di Lorenzo Biasiol
Via G. Andrea della Zonca, 25/A
Azienda Agricola Lucio Toffetti
Via del Mulino, 1
Via Paolo Veneziano, 12
Azienda Agricola Moscarda Matteo
Veli Vrh, 40
Azienda Agricola Dario Vitasovic
Di Izabela Vitasovic
+385 99 251 1173
Slow Food Presidium coordinator