Romania has more area devoted to vineyards than any other in Eastern Europe though the wines are meddling in quality at best. Generally the modern day wines are fruit-forward and offer good value when picked off the shelves of a European supermarket shelf. There has been a lack of focus on the quality sides of things though this is very slowly being realised with more international winemakers attempting to make their mark on Romania’s wine industry.
It must be pointed out that Romania did once have a thriving wine community and the sweet white wines of Cotnari where cherished and compared to the legendary sweet wines of Tokaj in their hey-day.
Main Grapes or styles
There is a real mix of grape varieties in Romania. Both indigenous and international varieties are important here all for different reasons.
International varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Pinot Noir have found a home here and are making some great red wines. Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Gris aren’t too far behind in importance and are being planted more and more as popularity gains traction.
The indigenous grapes of Feteasca gives wines that is aromatic and can be made in a range of sweetness levels. The grapes of Grasa and Tamaioasa where the white grapes that made the famous sweet wines of Cotnari, though today are rarely planted.
The leading regions, mainly devoted to red wine production, are Murfatlar and Dealu Mare. The wines here are made of a mix of grapes but Blaufranksich and Cabernet Sauvignon are king. In the middle of Romania, around Transylvania, there is the up-and-coming region of Tarnave that is devoting itself to white wines.
Climate and its effect on the wines made hereRomania is on the same latitude as France making it possible to create wines of good quality. It is more continental, though, with longer summers lending itself to red wine production. The best vineyards are planted at altitude where light reds, like Pinot Noir, and the whites can grow in order to retain acidity.