Korta Katarina – A Plavac Palace
What is now recognized as an exclusive property, certified by Relais & Châteaux, for people who love fine wine, gourmet food and spectacular scenery, was named after an old korta – a fenced sea captain’s villa.
When they weren’t travelling the seas, sea captains used to live and rest in their kortas, enjoying Plavac Mali grown on the Pelješac Peninsula.
Two of the most famous positions for Plavac Mali on Pelješac, or pretty much anywhere, are naturally Dingač and Postup. Korta Katarina winery bought and restored 6 hectares of vineyards on those positions, and rebuilt an old hotel complex nearby, with a state-of-the-art wine cellar.
Korta Katarina was established thanks to the passion of its owners, American businessman and philanthropist Lee Anderson and his wife Penny Anderson. Among their many endeavors, the Andersons supported a humanitarian mission to provide aid to the people of post-war Bosnia-Herzegovina and fell in love with Plavac Mali and the Dalmatian coast.
To build a connection between the Old and the New World, the Andersons decided to plant the famous Californian Zinfandel, genetically identical to Crljenak (Tribidrag) from Dalmatia. The vineyard on the label, surrounding the winery and the Korta Katarina complex, is actually Zinfandel.
However, the prime positions of Plavac Mali resulted in some of the most prestigious Plavac labels on the market. For example, Korta Katarina Plavac Mali mentions Dingač and Postup very discreetly on the bottle. Korta Katarina`s name makes all the difference. The difference lies in the balance, very difficult to achieve with often overripe Plavac grapes. All the key descriptors are here, such as carob, figs, and sage, yet without any jaminess or harsh tannic structure.
An even more concentrated version from selected grapes in the finest vintages is harmonious and elegant, full of dried fruits and typical medicinal herbs. Yes, Korta Katarina Reuben`s Reserve is a full-bodied yet lean Plavac Mali with skillfully softened tannins. One of the finest ever made. This wine is the reason we have decanters.
Korta Katarina Rose is not what many would typically expect from a rose. After all, it is a blend of Plavac Mali grapes from Dingač and Postup, and Zinfandel grown on the estate. It would be more accurate to perceive it as a structured and somewhat refreshing white wine despite the color. It is very dry and very fruity, but never shallow.
It actually shows some sides of Plavac Mali never exposed in a regular full-bodied red wine. The aromatic profile is intense with red oranges, cherries, and herbal notes.
But having said that, Korta Katarina also makes white wine, yet not from their own grapes. Only the finest Pošip grapes are bought each year from across the channel that connects rather than divides the island of Korčula and the Pelješac Peninsula.
Korta Katarina Pošip is regularly one of the best Pošips out there. The rich mouthfeel with a lingering freshness and fruit-driven aromas reveal layer after layer of floral and vegetal notes.
Recent vintages have discovered the potential of making sparkling wines from Pošip or even Plavac Mali grapes, as well as special selection wines. Each a great success, as we expect nothing less…
From Korta Katarina with love. A holiday postcard to taste and remember.