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Indigenous wines would complement Montenegro’s tourist offer

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Montenegro has a tradition and great potential when it comes to wine production, which is why more investment should be made in opening new wineries to complement the tourist offer with indigenous wines, it was assessed at the Wine Salon held at the Lazure Hotel in Meljine.

Željko Uljarević, the director of Companie de Vinos Montenegro, which organized the Wine Salon, said that a record number of exhibitors participated, and in addition to wineries, eight distilleries also presented their range, offering more than 60 authentic gin and whiskey flavors.

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“We have many novelties at the Salon when it comes to wineries. We have placed emphasis on Italy, which is the most popular international country in terms of wine sales in Montenegro. The region is traditionally represented at the salon. Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, and North Macedonia are present. We also have wine producers from Montenegro, so we have covered the entire story,” Uljarević said, as reported by PR Centar.

At the fifth anniversary Wine Salon, this year, 55 wineries presented more than 450 different wine labels, and according to Uljarević, there were also three masterclasses.

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“This year, we introduced masterclasses for the first time. These are educational lectures designed to improve the knowledge and expertise of wine enthusiasts, with a maximum of 20 participants,” explained Uljarević.

He added that wine enthusiasts and salon visitors expect new products on the market, so this year, six new varieties were presented at the Salon.

“Although the initial idea was not for the salon to be held as part of the Mimosa Festival, but as a presentation once a year for company friends and visitors, we received support from the Municipality of Herceg Novi, which recognized the importance of the event for the city’s tourist offer, and now it traditionally takes place within the Mimosa Festival program,” Uljarević said.

Reflecting on the beginnings of the company 16 years ago, he said they entered the market cautiously, with a few wine labels, but since then, it has developed significantly, now representing a large number of companies from the region and Europe.

“Every year, we are expected to be better, so in the future, we will focus on the educational aspect, to have more masterclasses. We will also improve the exhibitor offer, according to consumer preferences,” Uljarević said.

Zoran Vukčević, the owner of the Sinjac winery from Podgorica, stated that Montenegro has a tradition in wine production.

“In the last ten years, many small wineries have opened. The potential is significantly greater, and I think more should be invested in opening a greater number of wineries that would produce indigenous wines, which would complement the tourist offer with wines that cannot be tasted in the region,” said Vukčević.

He believes that the Wine Salon is an opportunity for his winery to announce the new season and to present with new wine labels.

“As every year, the organization is at an enviable level, and it is an opportunity to meet once again with traditional friends, whether they are distributors or consumers,” Vukčević said.

Đurđa Katić, the director of the organic winery Imperator from Serbia, explained that they produce wine according to organic biodynamic principles and are the only certified biodynamic producers in Serbia.

“Organic production is well known worldwide, and it is known that no pesticides are used, only natural fertilizers. We went a step further. We started producing our compost in accordance with good energy practices. This is what we do uniquely in Serbia, even in the region, and that is why we are internationally recognized,” said Katić.

She added that last year was difficult for them due to heavy rainfall, and it was a real test to determine if what they were doing made sense.

“My conclusion is that there are no bad years, only bad agronomists,” Katić concluded.

Aleks Simčić, a representative of the Simčić winery from Slovenia, said that their winery has been producing wine in oak barrels for over 25 years.

“We work with low yields. We try to keep the wines we produce with a lot of fresh notes as a result of the soil we have in Slovenia. Each year is a story in itself, and none is the same. I have been present at almost 30 harvests, and none is the same as the other. Each harvest is a good experience, but it is impossible to repeat it in the next harvest. Each harvest needs to be dedicated to, and the process should not be rushed,” said Simčić.

He believes that the Wine Salon is well organized, and it is visited by many people engaged in catering, as well as wine enthusiasts.

Simone Colasuonno, a representative of the Michele Chiarlo winery from Italy, said that their winery is located in the Piedmont region, and they are presenting for the first time at the Wine Salon and in Montenegro.

The country is wonderful. The impressions are great, and I hope to come back again. Such events are very important for us so that people can taste our wines,” Colasuonno said.

Marlene Angelloz, a representative of the Chene Bleu winery from France, said that their winery had previously presented its offer at the Wine Salon, stating that they were pleased to be back in Montenegro.

The organization is excellent. It is very important for us to present our wines to catering establishments in Montenegro because we produce very high-quality wines,” Angelloz said.

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