Moravian wines to have in Prague in 2022 — Taste of Prague Food Tours

Are you in Prague this year, love wine and want to get into Moravian wines, but don’t know where to start? We’re happy you’re here. First of all, good job you for knowing about Moravian wines. They are hardly ever exported (the entire wine production of the Czech Republic satisfies only about 40% of its consumption) and definitely worth looking into. Second, good job finding your way here. Because we have a few ideas. A starter pack, if you will.

We won’t lie to you: this list is heavily biased by our very own Moravian wine tours and whatever it is we taste on our explorations of the Moravian wine country. But we do believe that the winemakers we visit are the best we can visit, and we choose them very, very carefully to be a true representation of what great Moravian wines and winemakers can be. (BTW, if you want to book a spot, don’t hesitate – it’s an awesome weekend out of Prague that sells out quick and is always guided by Jan, who happens to write these words.)

So without hesitation, here we go – a few wines you should try in Prague while you’re here.

Vinařství Petr Kočařík: Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

It’s funny that when you’re talking to winemakers, climate change is not a matter open to discussion: it’s just an undisputable fact of life. The old “wisdom” was that Moravia, one of the northernmost wine countries anywhere, is great for whites and not so good for reds. Well, that’s just nonsense. If you want to be wowed by a Moravian red, just order this 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon – not your typical variety for Moravia – by Mr Kočařík… while they still last. Having a red Cabernet Sauvignon from this winery, which is very careful about its brand and the high standards associated with it, is rare – in the last ten years, they have only released three red vintages, and the 2018 is the best one. (The rest of the vintages, they just make a fantastic rose Cab Sav if they feel the red would not be delicious.)

Mr Kočařík is hands down our favorite Moravian winemaker. Started as a hobby winemaker and now still operating from home and producing some 10 to 12 thousand bottles a year and not wishing to expand, Mr Kočařík is a natural winemaker without any of the trendiness, “funkiness” or shock value sometimes associated with natural winemaking today. His wines are traditional, well made and free of any excesses. You should also try his Traminer (with longer skin contact and hypnotising notes of rosewater), Hibernal (everybody looks down on that resistant grape… until they have Mr Kočařík’s version) and the red Odměra, a fruity “table red” that is a reminder of what traditional Moravian reds tasted like in the old days, while being immensely fun and drinkable.

BTW, we are probably the only non-professionals allowed to have tastings with Mr Kočařík, and his sometimes brutal honesty and clarity of expression are one of the highlights of the tour.

Plenér: CMYK

We wanted to visit Dominika Černohorská of Plenér winery because we wanted to show a female winemaker in a field traditionally dominated by men. But this isn’t one of your derogatory “Female Chef of the Year” category – Dominika is a fantastic winemaker in her own right, gender aside, avoiding all dogmatic divide between the conventional and natural winemaking. She just wants to make great wine true to the terroir and history of that terroir, and also have fun in the process. And she succeeds – her wines are clean, crisp, fun, and challenge all dogmatics views of the present and the past. And her cellar in Pavlov that mixes traditional layout with modern art is the coolest in all Moravia.

Why CMYK? Because you can find it in many restaurant. After all, it was designed as “house wine” for the restaurant business, modelled after the “one-liter Müller Thurgau” that dominated the food industry under Communism. Dominika wanted to follow on that tradition, but with a modern sensibility. The result is a non-complicated, super fun, don’t-think-about-it wine that is very approachable yet still way above the rest in terms of quality of wine making and vineyard keeping. The same actually applies to her Frankovka, aka Blaufränkisch, which shoiuld resemble the light, fruity and drinkable reds of the Czech yesteryears.

(As a fun experiment, try her Riesling next to Sonberk’s riesling of the same vintage – Dominika buys grapes from Sonberk, so this just proves that you can make two very different wines from the same produce.)

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