Slovenia is recognized as one of the best wine-producing countries in the world. Slovenian wine is among the best in the world. Viticulture and winemaking have existed in Slovenia since the time of the Celtic and Illyrian tribes, before the Romans introduced winemaking to the lands of France, Spain, and Germany. Slovenian vineyards are located in the heart of the European wine-growing area. Due to the characteristics of the soil, climate, and cultivation methods, each wine-growing area has a unique selection of varieties.
The quality of the wine depends on the grape variety – i.e. the grapes from which the wine is made, the place where the vines are grown – the geological substrate, the climate, the micro-climatic conditions, and the oenological processes used by the winegrower to produce and nurture his wine.
Slovenia is a magnificent, almost idyllic, sun-drenched location and varied landscapes intoxicate with its traditional gastronomy and fine drops of wine. Each area represents its own tradition of production and winemaking, and years of experience have refined the processes and flavors.
Slovenia is divided into three wine-growing regions (Podravje, Primorje and Posavje), which in turn are divided into nine wine-growing districts. They differ mainly by their location, which in turn influences their growing conditions and climate. Therefore, the sensory characteristics of the wines are also different and vary considerably from one wine-growing region to another.
All three wine regions are just about an hour’s drive from the capital which makes it a great daily excursion.
So, how about a glass of wine in Slovenia?
How to Choose the Right Slovenian Wine
Some say that we should not blindly listen to different advice. We should follow our own sensations because this way we will enjoy the wine better. If you are not a connoisseur, you can listen to the advice of experts, but, above all, drink what you feel like drinking – if you don’t like Malvasia, don’t drink it. Prefer Cabernet sauvignon? That’s perfectly fine. But let’s not underestimate any wine, because they have all been made with effort.
You can get to know Slovenian wines better by visiting the vineyard and winery. This gives people an idea of how the vines have been cultivated, the grapes harvested, and the wine made. It’s not just about how the wine looks in the glass, but the whole journey from the vineyard to the winery.
Podravje (Drava region) is the largest wine region in Slovenia, known for its cool climate, varied terrain, and above all, white varieties such as Laški and Renski Riesling, Sauvignon and the pride of Styria: Šipon. The sub-region is divided into the wine-growing regions of Styria and Prekmurje. Styrian wines are elegant and have higher acidity due to the cooler climate. This region is also home to the world’s oldest grapevine which is over 400 years old.
Lower Sava Region
Posavje (Lower Sava region) is home to the Blue Frankinja, which over time is gaining more and more recognition. It used to be found in Cviček, Metliška Črnina, and Bizeljčan, but today it is also increasingly recognized as a varietal wine.
Blue Frankinja has various names around the world, most often with the adjective “blue” in its name due to its blue-tinted strawberry skins.
Slovenian Littoral Region
The Primorska wine region (Slovenian Littoral region), which only touches the sea in a small part, is mainly known for its white varieties, such as Malvasia and Sauvignon Blanc. The great variety of soils confers complexity to the wines of the Littoral. Primorska is divided into the wine regions of Goriška Brda, the Vipava Valley, Karst, and Slovenian Istria. Goriška Brda is one of the best-known wine regions in Slovenia, offering not only beautiful views but also world-famous wines. Rebula is the autochthonous queen of the Goriška Brda region, which also bears the name “Brda, home of Rebula”.
The Vipava Valley is famous for having the largest indigenous varieties in Slovenia. In general, Primorska is a trendy wine region in Slovenia, with many popular winemakers such as Marjan Simčič, Dolfo, Pasji rep, Edi Simčič, Movia, Burja, hailing from the region.
And if you find yourself in the capital, Ljubljana, there are several wine bars where we can organize a tasting for you, that is, give you suggestions while you take a guided tour of the city with our local guide.
What Should We Drink with Slovenian Food?
In summer we drink cooler, lighter, and softer wines, and in winter richer wines, because we spend more energy, and the dishes are usually richer. Just as Slovenian food varies and changes according to the region and the season, so do the guidelines for choosing the wine to accompany it. We will gladly take you to a place that offers varied food and where they can suggest the best Slovenian wine to match your dish.
About Wine Serving Temperatures
The temperature at which wine is served in all seasons is set as follows: sparkling wine at 6-8 °C, softer dry white wine at 8-10 °C, fuller white wine with residual sugar at 10-12 °C, richer white wines, rosé, and red wines, depending on the fullness, are drunk at 12-14 °C, softer red wines at 14-16 °C, fuller red wines at 16-18 °C, older vintages up to 20 °C.
Let us know if you would like to try Slovenian wine while you are touring Slovenia. For those, who would like to learn more about Slovenian gastronomy, we can organize your tour inm such a way. But if you simply want to try a glass or two, our driver-guide will stop at one of several wineries, passing from one town to the other.
Ready to mix culture, gastronomy, and wine on your holiday to Slovenia? Let us know how we should plan your route.