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Meneghetti Winery
by
Kathy Sullivan

Meneghetti WinerySummary: Meneghetti Winery located in Istria offers a luxurious experience for wine enthusiasts. The facility is a combination of olive groves, vineyards, winery, guest rooms and gourmet foods.

Meneghetti Winery is much more than a winery. We spent our last evening in Istria at the Meneghetti Villa, a perfect end to our visit in Istria, Croatia. Meneghetti is located only 1.5 kilometers from the Adriatic Sea.

Driving to the Meneghetti location we bypassed a large gated driveway, Traveling a little further we decided to turn around. Returning to the gate and locating a call button, we were immediately welcomed. The gate quickly opened to a long driveway lined with tall trees. In the distance we saw three figures in front of a large estate house. We were quickly greeted by the formally dressed staff, helped with our luggage, and ushered into a massive renovated villa.

As soon as we entered the Meneghetti facility, and our coats were off, we were offered a glass of sparkling wine (pjenvsac), Classic 2010. This sparkling wine was a blend of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc. The wine was a refreshing blend with hints of bread. While visiting this delightful winery and hospitality facility we had the opportunity to taste several other wines.

We met Goran Hanžek who was laidback but enthusiastic about everything Meneghetti has accomplished including vineyards, olive groves and bed and breakfast. Since it was late, we waited until morning to meet the winemaker and tour the winery just a short walk from the guesthouse.

History

Meneghetti was purchased in 2001 by Romana and Miroslav Plišo. By 2003 they had their first olive oil production. Eventually by 2009 they were producing wine.

Meneghetti WineryVineyards

Today the vineyards at the winery site consist of 11.5 hectares (28 acres) of grapes planted in red soil. Grape varieties include Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc. Another six hectares are in Buje where the vines are planted in a white clay soil. These six hectares are planted with Malvazija Istarska, Chardonnay, and Pinot Blanc. Goran commented that they grow red wine grapes in red soil and white wine grapes in white soil. At the time of our March visit, the vines were still dormant. However we did observe the red soils.

Meneghetti WineryThere is also an olive grove on the property. Varieties include Rosulja, Istarska Bjelica, Leccino and Buža.

Meneghetti WineryWinery/Tasting Room

Winemaker Damir Bosek gave us a tour of the winery. The winery production rooms and tasting room is a short walk from the villa. The winery encompasses a group of rooms. Stainless steel tanks were in an outdoor tent. The tanks can be used to cold stabilize wines. Indoors there is another stainless steel tank room. Two riddling racks are also in the room; the sparkling wine is hand riddled. Large oak tanks are in the barrel room. These are used for white wines that are put in oak. The red wines go into barriques that are stacked two high.

Meneghetti WineryAcross from the winery rooms there is another series of rooms including the tasting room. Between the two buildings, in the courtyard, there is an old stone olive press. The olive press and nearby olive grove is a reminder that Meneghetti also produces olive oils. The tasting room has a table where visitors can taste the wines and olive oils. Adjacent to the tasting room there is a wine storage room. Damir posed holding one of the larger bottles of wine in a box.

Dinner

The sumptuous dinner was in the cozy, friendly dining area with the commercial kitchen adjacent. We enjoyed an unusual gourmet appetizer that included crabmeat and crab eggs. The entrée was monkfish. A special and unusual elegant dessert followed this feast.

Meneghetti WineryWines

Meneghetti WineryThe focus of the wines at Meneghetti is red wines particularly Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Meneghetti produces two lines of wine. The first are the young wines. White label wines are fresh young wines. Black label wines are older and can age for many years in the bottle.

The Malvazija 2011 was a straw color with an aroma of citrus and floral notes. The taste had floral, tropical and citrus notes. The finish was crisp and fruity. Meneghetti White 2009 was a blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc. The wine had pear on the aroma. The taste also had pear with hints of yellow stone fruits. The crisp finish had fruit yielding to caramel and citrus.

Merlot 2011 was produced from grapes from the vineyard at the winery. The color was a dark purple. Black cherry notes were throughout the wine. The finish was crisp with tannins. Meneghetti Red 2009 was a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. The resulting wine was a dark ruby color. The wine offered dark fruit notes. The crisp finish was fruity with tannins.

Guest Rooms

The overnight accommodations were very comfortable. The room we enjoyed was spacious even though a king-bed was in the center of it. In the morning we went to the dining area to enjoy a self-serve breakfast.

Meneghetti provides an extraordinary experience for wine enthusiasts. Contact the winery for an appointment. Consider making arrangements for staying for a few days.

Villa Meneghetti article

Meneghetti Winery                                                         
Stancija Meneghetti 1
52211, Bale, Croatia

GPS: N45º 00.446’  E13º 44.72’

Article written March 2013


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