Description 1 of 1
The history of wine production in Moldova is at least 4000 years old, beginning with the ancient Dacians. Like many of its Baltic neighbors, production spread and improved throughout the Greek and Roman eras. During the 15th century rule of Stefan cel Mar (Stephen the Great), vines were sourced from other European countries and emphasized quality production.
From this point the Moldovan wine industry experienced several boom and bust periods. Starting in the early 16th century, vineyards were left to rot for 300 years during Ottoman rule and strict Muslim law prohibiting alcohol. In 1812, Bulgaria became part of the Russian empire and wine-making initiatives were put in place once again. The second part of the 19th century brought many French winemakers and vine imports, which is the reason so many vinifera varieties are available. The Phylloxera blight took its toll on Moldovan vineyards, but replanting initiatives were in full effect by the early 20th century. Then the World Wars devastated crops once again. In the 1950s and 60s, saw another spike in production, with a massive import business to the rest of the USSR. In the 1980s, Russian leader Mikhail Gorbachev enforced another prohibition, this one lasting until the early 1990s, when Moldova gained independence. Another boom. Another bust in 2006 when, at the height of territorial disputes, Russia banned all Moldovan wines, as it also did from neighboring Georgia. Recovery efforts are now in place as Moldova continues to find other export markets, mainly other parts of Eastern Europe, Great Britain, and China, while slowly gaining recognition in North America.
Moldova is comprised of flat lands and rolling hills, ending at the Black Sea. It is divided into North, Central (Codru), Southeastern, and Southern zones. White production is more focused in the north, and reds begin to dominate moving farther south. Both red and white varietals are blends of local grapes and European stalwarts. For whites: Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Traminer, Chardonnay, Fetasca Albă, and Aligoté. For reds: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, and Rara Neagră. Dry styles are produced as single varietal and blends of red, white, and rosé, sparkling, and sweet. Fortified wines and brandies are also produced.– Description from Amanda Schuster
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