Celebrate the Season, with Moravian Wine on Your American Table
We all know the Czech Republic is famous for beer—the Bohemians created and perfected pilsner. But did you know that Moravia, the land of tradition in the easternmost part of the Czech Republic, has been keeping their wines a well-guarded secret? In a New York Times article, Petr Ocenasek, a Moravian wine merchant, explained the tradition: “In the Middle Ages, the water was unsafe to drink, so we Moravians drank wine,” he said. First planted by Romans in the 2nd century, Moravian wine is now world-class. In 2014 only, the wines received over 700 medals at major international venues.
The great undiscovered wine region: Moravia, Czech Republic.
With the holiday season knocking on the door, it seems like the perfect time to select a few bottles. Why not share a rare and delicious part of our common heritage with friends and colleagues this season? Moravian wines make an excellent compliment to any meal, especially Thanksgiving. The whites are crisp and aromatic. The reds are rich in complexity but light in body, and they will not overpower when paired.
“I would recommend Blauer Portugieser (Modrý Portugal) for Thanksgiving. It is a light red wine that will not overpower the turkey and offers surprising complexity with hints of earth, smoke and minerality. For a white wine, Rivaner (Muller-Thurgau) is a lovely aperitif wine, floral and rich without being sweet”, said Noah Ullman, owner of Czech Wine Imports, a family business that introduced Moravian wine to America, focusing exclusively on promoting the wines of the Czech Republic. Czech Wine Imports brings to the US about 20 different wines from several winemakers, including Chateau Valtice, Spielberg, Sonberk, Stapleton Springer, Michlovsky and others. All of the wines that come into the US under the Vino z Czech label are immediately recognized for the beautiful artwork of Alphonse Mucha that the label carries.
Each bottle of Moravian wine in the US carries this beautiful artwork by Czech Art Nouveau artist Alphons Mucha
The wine region of Moravia is small and very special. In a wine-growing region roughly the same size as the wine regions of New York State, with an acreage size right in between that of the French regions of Alsace and Burgundy, Moravia is home to a remarkable number of 18,000 wineries! For comparison, New York only has 320 and there are less than 8,400 wineries in all of North America! What this means is that the vast majority of Moravian wineries are small family operations or individual passion projects that support a rich culture and history of making exceptional wine. The press has picked up on the wonder of Moravian wines, most recently CNN calls Moravia one of the ten worldwide wine regions to watch and BlackBook wrote about Moravian wines last year. Moravian wine has also been featured in The Wall Street Journal and most of the major wine publications.
All of the Moravian wines are featured on Vino z Czech’s website, including the list of places that offer them. Or, just order online at: www.getwineonline.com. Get 3 bottles or more and use checkout code "vinozczech" to get free shipping.
The wine region of Moravia is small and very special, a home of 18,000 wineries.
All photographs courtesy of Czech Wine Imports.