Zadar region is becoming more famous every year for its high-quality wines and winemakers that offer marvellous wine tasting experiences. The region is slowly gaining a place on the wine map of Croatia as an area for connoisseurs and important for domestic wine production and wine tourism.
They continuously invest in new knowledge and innovations. In cooperation with extremely skilled oenologists from the Zadar area, they are creating a new story about Zadar County as an area where wine is valued and treasured. The 12 medals from the Decanter World Wine Awards prove this fact.
The flagship of this region's winemaking is the wider area of Ravni Kotari, a sunlit fertile valley in which varieties such as the famous Bordeaux Merlot, Syrah, and Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as the local autochthonous Maraština, thrive especially well today.
And that is exactly why we start from that tame sub-region in this list of the five best wine tastings and wine tours that you can find in Zadar and its surroundings.
Tasting of organically produced wines from Škaulj winery in Nadin
Škaulj winery, which is proudly run by father and son, is special in many ways. They were one of Croatia's first ecological vineyards; performing visionarily from start to finish. It paid off when they received royal recognition by Sweden’s king & queen who visited them back in 2013!
Today, on more than 15 hectares, they follow the strictest standards of organic cultivation, and they do not falter when it comes to following their vision. That' is exactly why these wines (Maraština, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cuvee “Tomislav”) have become so sought after. You can taste them paired with prosciutto, while enjoying cheese or olives depending on your preference!
The tour of this small winery will fully reveal the secret behind its success, with expert guidance that points out what makes these wines so special. You can taste three or five organic wine varieties, and in addition to pleasure for your palate you'll also experience another dimension - a journey through the cellars while being educated about wine production.
Grapes come from the hinterland, but wines are produced next to the sea
In the Zadar region of Northern Dalmatia, even the city's wineries source their grapes from the hinterland, more precisely from the aforementioned Ravni Kotari.
Even those wineries located in the city of Zadar source their fruit from this area rich with sunny weather and warm summers.
This is how the next winemaker we present operates as well. His name is Trifun Poljak.
Trifun is a man who returned to Croatia from Switzerland, and has dedicated himself to winemaking as his passion. His wine tastings are also special because they're held in fluent German and Italian. But, what will make you want to visit Poljak Winery immediately after hearing about their top wines - is their quality, of course!
The grapes for these wines are harvested in the Benkovac-Stankovci vineyards and they're of exceptional quality. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sryah as red wine varieties; Chardonnay or Maraština if you prefer white, will surely find their consumers who recognize how powerful this local terroir can be!
During the wine tasting in Poljak winery, you will be able to sample award-winning wines, eat high quality Pag cheese and local prosciutto. In one of the options you will also get served steaks prepared on site by Trifun - the grill master himself!
Of course, all the aforementioned hedonism will be complemented by an informal story about the origin and development of the winery, viticulture and winemaking techniques, and other topics - more life-oriented. In this informal atmosphere you will be able to enjoy conversations with the owners while sipping on something delicious.
So, if you're looking for a great place to enjoy some wine while soaking up the atmosphere of the lively city of Zadar, look no further than the neighbourhood of Diklo.
Private wine tour for everyone who wants a real experience of Zadar's wineries and wine-gastro culture
There are certainly those among you who want to combine visits to wineries with a tour of the destination and pleasant and informative conversations with local connoisseurs of society and culture in Zadar.
That is why there is a private guided wine tour of Zadar area, organized by Authland. It will take you on a 4-hour trip around Zadar during which you will visit two charming wineries. You will experience a beautiful interior, but also an exterior that fits in with the views that shoot far towards the Adriatic Sea and scattered islands that attract your attention like pearls on a necklace. Your guide will pick you up and take you on an adventure where you’re able to exchange information about wine and food history with emphasis on the wineries that we'll visit.
While one winery is focused on the production of around 35,000 bottles per year and literally took its name from the French "wine from the garage" movement, the other produces over 100,000 bottles. The grapes for these 100,000 bottles come from slopes that reach up to 43 m above sea level and a 30 degree incline. They're exposed to sun over 2,500 hours every year!
Two special stories, and many special wines. From international varieties such as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah, which are combined perfectly into the blend named Bonterra, to the autochthonous varieties Pošip, Crljenak, and Plavac Mali, which are part of the love for tradition that these wineries cultivate. Join this tour and enjoy the wine culture of Zadar!
The comfort of a stylishly perfect cellar of a small winery in the suburbs of Zadar
Fiolić Winery is a small boutique winery in the city of Zadar. This family-owned and operated business offers visitors an intimate atmosphere with excellent wines to match! They’ve built a cellar that simply evokes memories of some earlier times, with its decoration and smells, and especially the wooden barrels that stand firmly as proof of love for wine and innovations in winemaking.
In addition to wine, Fiolić family is well-known for offering some of the most unique and delicious liqueurs in all Croatia. Their offerings include many unique and exquisite flavors, such as liqueurs made from figs or marasca cherries.
This means that during the wine tasting you will be able to try 3 or 5 wines and 1 or 2 liqueurs, as well as fine Dalmatian snacks: bacon, šokol cured meat (a local delicacy), cheese, and anchovies. It's up to you to choose the combination. Remember, everything you try you will be able to buy later and enjoy wines or liqueurs in the warmth of your home while remembering the great times in Zadar.
A party that combines painting and wine? In Zadar? Why not!
Finally, we have a completely different recommendation for you.
The Art Bottega concept was created in 2018. It is a fun and creative program that will allow you to paint like the professionals with an experienced instructor. It's ideal for beginners who want their very first art class in true studio conditions, guided by someone else and learning from start-to-finish how it should be done properly!
But not only that - the best thing about the whole experience is that you can drink unlimited white and red wine all night long! Through this great wine and paint activity in Zadar, canvas, brushes and a glass of wine will be your closest collaborators. The work you create will be one in which the memories of great evenings spent with friends or people just meeting always stay close to your heart.
Now you definitely cannot say that Zadar and the region have nothing authentic to offer regarding gastronomy and wine. You just have to think carefully about which experience to choose and enjoy it with your group. Zadar wine experiences are eagerly waiting for you!
Book your wine tasting or wine tour in Zadar area - today!