Kozlović winery
© Kozlović

Record haul for Croatian wine at Decanter World Awards

Domestic winemakers claim three platinum and 16 gold medals in an outstanding year for the industry.

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Time Out contributors
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With three platinums and 16 gold medals, Croatian wines have just achieved their greatest success so far at the prestigious Decanter World Awards. Considered the gold standard for the global industry, the accolades have been given since 2004.

This year, experts at the UK magazine sampled more than 18,000 wines from around the world. In 2021, Croatian winemakers took three platinum and eight golds. Now the Decanter judges have granted twice as many golds, along with an equal number of platinums.

Croatia can justifiably consider itself a major force in the region as far as wine is concerned, although relatively little is exported. Istria remains the domestic leader – both Gianfranco Kozlović and the Benvenuti brothers claimed platinum medals. Stalwart Marko Fakin won yet another gold for Istria, his wines having been recognised by the Decanter team every year they have been entered. Fellow Motovun winemaker Claudio Tomaz picked up another gold for his Teran Barbarossa.

Two golds went to the Zura winery in Korčula, and one to Badel for its nine-year old, mature Korlat Supreme. David Štampar and Branko Jakopić took golds back to the ever more prominent vineyards of Međimurje, and even the venerable cellars of Ilok in Slavonia, in operation for generations, claimed gold.

Perhaps most impressively, Croatia’s third platinum went to Šoškić in Plešivica, just outside Zagreb. ‘We are dedicated to the pursuit of exceptional wines,’ runs the motto of this family-run winery, only in business since shortly before the pandemic. Its Haiku variety scored 97 points out of 100 to gain the top award from the Decanter team.

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