Why does this book cover wine regions in three countries? The answer: because the real, physical wine region is situated in these 3 countries and these territories share the same terroir, the same history, the same viticultural traditions, culture, and gastronomy. And it is a fascinating story to tell. It is in fact ONE TERROIR, THREE COUNTRIES.
In a few weeks, my new book will be published: NORTH ADRIATIC, covering Friuli Venezia Giulia, West Slovenia, Istria, and Kvarner. The North Adriatic is partly Italian, partly Slovenian, and partly Croatian. The present borders were created only after 1947 and, important wine regions were divided into two parts. Today, this is a very peaceful part of Europe and there is a fascinating wine scene with so many interesting producers presenting wines in many different ways. The traditional wines from Friuli Venezia Giulia can be wonderful, elegant, and sometimes overwhelming. This is a great wine region! And the western regions in Slovenia have seen a fast development and many young, enthousiast producers starting recently. Istria is one of the most beautiful areas of the Adriatic and also there is so much development. And who knew that the Kvarner has very authentic and wonderful wines? There is a lot to discover and this makes the region fascinating. All that is reason for my new upcoming book: NORTH ADRIATIC.

MY MISSION is to create worldwide awareness that this region belongs to the selection of most important macro-regions of Europe: next to Bordeaux, Burgundy, Piemonte, Tuscany, also the NORTH ADRIATIC should be seen as one of Europe’s important wine regions. This is an important ambition.
The great wines, the many fascinating winemakers, the interesting diversity, the well-kept wineries, the beauty of the landscapes, the gastronomy, altogether this makes the North Adriatic a European top destination. There are so many elegant wines that show their unique terroir. And it is not only whites, also red wines are of great diversity and can be of great class. But it is not only the prestigious wines that make a region important.; it is also the originality of the wines, and the North Adriatic has a great number of highly original wines.
            Photo: Roman remains in Aquileia, which has a long wine history

Few European wine regions have such a moving history. It creates a special attraction because the winemakers not only need to explain their wines, soil, terroir, etc. They also can tell about their history. Everywhere, there are remains of the First or Second World War. But more important is the fact that the region has remained a fascinating wine region. The regions have much in common, also climate and soils, which don’t stop at the borders.
The famous ‘ponca‘ soil is found along a ridge of many kilometers, in Italy, Slovenia, Istria, and Kvarner. And the climate is fascinating because it is very different from that of other wine regions at the same latitude, made possible by the Alps and the Adriatic. The abundance of indigenous grape varieties and the great skills of the winemakers in Friuli, Slovenia, and Istria make that there is a huge diversity of great wines.
And did you ever hear of orange wines? It is here that this trend started. In my book, I will explain the wines and give my vision on some topics related to the orange wines.
Photo: vineyards near Oslavia in Collio, with Gorizia and the Vipava valley in the background

Collio is maybe the most well-known part of this region: it has claimed an important status as one of Italy’s top white wine regions. There is a huge number of absolutely fantastic wines of great elegance in Collio. On the other side of the border is Goriška Brda, or Brda: once Collio and Brda were the same without any division but in 1947 came the border and Brda became part of Yugoslavia. Is it a setback for Brda? I don’t think so, because Brda, too, is a great wine region that merits the same status as Italian Collio. More you will read in my book. Another important region is Colli Orientali, situated in the eastern hills of Friuli, with an abundance of fantastic wineries. In my book, you will learn more! Also about Isonzo, which is a smaller wine region: it has a large number of high-quality wines and prestigious wineries. And there is much more: Friuli Grave is a large region that is undiscovered by the public, time to discover the wines of Grave! The same for Karst and Aquileia which are smaller regions but have much to offer. And did you ever hear of the Vipava valley? It is such a wonderful wine region: a long valley with many fantastic wines: a particular mosaic of wines. And then Istria: my research learned me many interesting aspects of Istria’s wine history. And, do not forget the Slovenian part of Istria: it makes interesting wines. But the biggest part is Croatian Istria where they make elegant Malvasias. By the way, Istria knows such a huge amount of highly interesting cultural monuments! Everybody loves Istria. And did you know that the Kvarner is a very interesting and original wine region? Read my book!
Photo: vineyards in the Colli Orientali

The interesting aspect of the North Adriatic is the multitude of countries and influences: Slavic, Venetian, Italian, Austrian influences are still everywhere. And the gastronomy? In many restaurants, dishes are offered with Italian, Austrian, and Slavic influences. This is the typical regional cuisine, it is fusion. The gastronomy alone is a reason to discover this region.
Photo: vineyards in Isonzo wine region: it has a lot of high-quality wines.

The NORTH ADRIATIC will be a book with 20 chapters and interesting information about history, gastronomy, geology, and orange wines. There is much information about the patrimony of indigenous grape varieties. The wine regions in the book are Colli Orientali, Collio & Brda, Isonzo, Grave, Aquileia, Karst, Vipava, Slovenian and Croatian Istria, and Kvarner. It contains 256 pages and 600 full-color photos by 2 professional photographers and maps of all regions. The design will be of high quality.

Are you interested? The book can be sent to your home. Price is EUR 50,00 (ex sending costs). For more information contact me: paulbalkewine@gmail.com

Paul Balke
PS: in one wine tour you can visit wineries, places, and restaurants in Friuli Venezia Giulia, Slovenia, and Istria, in 3 countries. It makes the region extra interesting!

The region has great beauty and herewith some impressions:
Photo: Friuli Grave is a highly interesting but underrated wine region.
Photo: central Istria with the small hilltop town Motovun. It has a lot of interesting wines and.. truffles!
Photo: vineyards near Koper/Capodistria, with view on the Adriatic sea
Photo: Biljana with vineyards in Goriska Brda, a wonderful wine region, right at the border with Italy
Photo: vineyards in Vipava valley, another very interesting wine region!
Photo: Goriska Brda with the Julian Alps in the background

Photo: Vrbnik: this very picturesque village on the island Krk in the Kvarner Gulf is also the center of wine production in the Kvarner area.