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Struma Valley

The Struma River Valley region is a wine-growing region in the south-west of Bulgaria. It is an old region internationally recognised for its red wines as the story tells that the wines were so dark and thick that when the snow-white skinned wives of the European royalties were drinking them, you could see the wine passing through their throats. Struma Valley and Melnik wine region possess some distinct characteristics mainly defined through the influence of the largest rivers in the region – Mesta and Struma. The last one flows to the Aegean Sea and gives the area a unique microclimate similar to the one along the Mediterranean. Therefore, the Struma Valley and Melnik wine region are characterised with the highest average yearly temperatures in Bulgaria, as well as with diverse soil conditions. The climate is with typically hot summers and short and mild winters. The region is home to a unique red grape variety cultivated there – Shiroka Melnishka Loza or just Melnik, which is an endemic species and all attempts to cultivate it outside the region have failed. Other grapes that are thriving are the Rubin the which is a crossing between Nebbiolo and Syrah created in the late 1950s in the country together with the international Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Syrah, Petit Verdot, Nebbiolo, Sangiovese from the red varieties and Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Traminer, Viognier and Muscat from the white. This is a wine region worth a visit keeping in mind that Sir Winston Churchill regularly has wine deliveries from the Melnik wine.

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