24.5.12

Zvonko Bogdan Vineyard

Zvonko Bogdan Vineyard Palic, Serbia.
As you may have figured out, I LOVE WINE, and I find vineyards astonishingly romantic and almost heavenly. The process of planting and pruning the vines, and the time that goes into blending and creating that perfect cuvee; I just love all of it because it speaks of intentionality and purpose. I am also from Oregon's wine country, so maybe that has something to do with my mini wine obsession. I occasionally remind Hubby that he needs to make lots and LOTS of money so that we can retire early, buy a villa (with a vineyard) in Tuscany and grow old making wine and entertaining guests. He always gives me a silly little smirk and says, "well, honey, looks like you're going to have to find one super-duper-high-paying-job to make that all happen! I'm never going to make THAT much money!" I just laugh it off - and he thinks I'm joking - but I am really not joking at all. Ohhhh to be a dreamer, married to the ultimate realist! 

So, I am holding onto my dream, and perhaps one day, I will find a "super-duper-high-paying-job" and finally get that Tuscan villa. In the meantime, I satisfy my cravings by visiting other people's vineyards! While Subotica, Serbia claims to have a "wine route," I have struggled to find many well established stops along that supposed "route." Of course Dibonis Winery is close by and it's fabulous (read about the grape harvest at Dibonis), but I think the staff may be getting sick of entertaining me! I figured it was time to discover a new place and the one on my radar was Zvonko Bogdan Vineyard on Lake Palic, Serbia. 

This is Zvonko Bogdan - a famous Serbian folk singer who lives in Subotica. 
Zvonko Bogdan? What's with the name? I asked the same thing and was met with looks of astonishment from my Serbian friends, "you don't know who ZVONKO BOGDAN is?! He's only like the most famous Serbian folk singer, and he lives in Subotica! He might even be your neighbor." Ops. I quickly looked the local celebrity up on Wikipedia and YouTube and raced out to the vineyard that is his namesake. Sadly I was greeted with construction trucks and boarded up windows and doors. I dejectedly turned my car around and drove home. Boo.

Several months after my first failed attempt, I contacted the marketing and PR manager for Zvonko Bogdan vineyard. She assured me that I could come out for a wine tour and tasting even though the vineyard wasn't exactly finished. I jumped at the opportunity and headed out for that tour and tasting. 

The vineyard is owned by three jolly gentlemen (Mr. Bogdan being one of them), and they have been producing wine for a few years enlisting the expertise of a renowned German wine maker. The completed facility will include a hotel and fancy-pants restaurant which are both largely unfinished. My tour guide showed me only the parts that were completed. The well polished (and expensive) barrels and fermenters have only been used once, and since it's not yet the season for the second harvest, things were really quiet. Give it a few months, and I am sure this place will be a buzz of activity. 


Fancy fermenters polished and quietly waiting for the next harvest. 
The well designed tasting room looks out into the barrel room. 
Wine of display at Zvonko Bogdan Vineyard. 
Usually guests aren't allowed in this climate controlled barrel room - but I'm just lucky I guess!

A merlot and two great cuvees for tasting. 
Zvonko Bogdan's Cuvee No. 1 was my favorite and of course the most expensive! 
I am looking forward to getting back out to Zvonko Bogdan Vineyard once it's finished. I didn't get a projected completion date, but let's just hope it's soon. I only have two more years in Serbia! 


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