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The intense aroma of Macedonian wines is due to the combined influence of the Mediterranean and continental climates: warm sunny days and cool nights, which help to slow the ripening of the grapes.
Macedonian cuisine is diverse and there are dozens of local dishes to try.
The Tikvesh Wine District is the most famous in the country.
It’s where you can find 80% of Macedonia’s wineries, and many of them offer wine tastings.
Maybe a Yarra Valley or Napa County if your taste runs a little closer to home.
A few of my favourites are: Tikves (the oldest winery in the country and the biggest in South-East Europe); Popova Kula (the winery that resurrected the Stanushina); Popov (excellent location and some of the best Temjanikas in the country); and Stobi (the most modern winery in Macedonia).
You can also opt to visit the Veles Wine District and go for a tasting at the boutique winery, Chateau Sopot (excellent Cabs), or go up north to the Skopje Wine District and visit Chateau Kamnik winery (country’s most awarded vineyard).
It’s that big, bold style that has put the dark-skinned Vranec in people’s minds as a wine of serious international quality.
But there’s more to Macedonian wine making than just one variety.
However we’re mostly proud of the country’s flag-bearer, the ferocious Vranec (some of the best Vranec grapes come from the villages of Veshje, and Dissan).