2014 Coronico ‘Crno’
Region: Teran, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
Grapes: Istria < Croatia
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Organic farming, bright red, iron rich “Terra Rossa” soil + white calcareous stone, unfined/unfiltered
Winemaker: Moreno Coronica
Coronica was established in 1992 by Moreno Coronica after the fall of communist Yugoslavia. The largest peninsula in the Adriatic, Istria borders both Italy and Slovenia, with a 280-mile coastline, Mediterranean climate and diverse terrain. Moreno’s vineyards are cultivated without fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides, and grapes are harvested in multiple passes, always sorted by hand. Generally, he lets the Teran hang until late October to allow this lean grape to gain more flesh. But in 2014 he had to pick early to avoid massive rains, so he blended in a little of his Cab and Merlot and decided to make a one-off blend. And instead of barreling in oak as he usually does, this is done fresh, in stainless steel. The result is a hearty, lively, sleek red with pretty rose aromatics, perfect for Tuesday night dinner, with no tannic roughness demanding more time to soften and mellow. The Teran still dominates with tart cranberry fruit, forest herbs and a wild, iron-like character, but the Merlot and Cab soften the tannins and round it out with a touch of sweet black fruit and some weight. A lovely BBQ wine.