Zlatan Otok Winery - Crljenak 2015
The Zlatan Otok Winery was established in 1986 in three Dalmatian locations: on the southern slopes of Hvar Island, in Makarska below Mt. Biokovo, and in Šibenik. Since its founding, winemaker Zlatan Plenkovic has won the Best Croatian Winemaker award and has been recognized as one of the top producers in the country. The vineyards around Šibenik are located on rocky, rolling hills with soils composed of clay topsoils and a limestone foundation. The vines are dry-farmed and there is minimal amount of spraying in the vineyard, with only a small amount of powdered sulfites.
Crljenak is the same grape as Primitivo in Puglia, Italy and Zinfandel in California, though it is originally from Croatia where it is known as Crlenjak Kastelanski, or Tribidrag. Deep purple in color with garnet highlights, the wine emits enchanting aromas of dried and spicy red fruits with a brambly earthiness. On the palate, the Crljenak is full-bodied, rich and smooth with excellent concentration of ripe fruit flavors and an appealing saline minerality. The finish is long and intense with lingering notes of cardamom and potpourri. This an excellent example of the grape from its homeland. Enjoy with a thick cut of beef smothered in red wine sauce.