The hardworking people of Istria have made good use of this land, known to be exceptional for growing grapes, and thus there is a large number of winemakers and well-known wine cellars in northwestern Istria. The best-known Istrian wines are Malvasia, Teran, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and – my personal favourite – Muscat.
If you wonder how to make good use of your time try attending a wine tasting or visit one of the many interesting events that celebrate wine. For a springtime visit, I would suggest Istria Wine and Walk, Wine Cellar Open House Days in summer, and now, with autumn on the way, Grape Days in Buje. These events have come to a great deal of attention, and more and more of them are being organised each year.
Grape Days in Buje, an event inspired by people and tradition, have been celebrated for a number of years now. Initially, this was an event that only symbolically marked the beginning of the grape harvest, but today, in addition to festivities and celebrations of the precious fruit, there are musical performances, culture and arts performances, various competitions, an autumn farm fair, an antiques fair, exhibitions…
I would especially like to mention the historical portrayal of how grapes were processed after harvesting and the preparation of a local wine called Mištela, which hails back to olden days when grapes were placed into large barrels and girls crushed them with their bare feet. For the occasion, Buje’s Trg Slobode square is renamed Bacchus’ Court, and the festivities will take you back in time. Grape Days also appeal to both locals, who take this opportunity to socialise and celebrate the beauty and products of their region, and tourists, who can have a great time while enjoying authentic Istrian products.
Buje’s Grape Days bring together centuries of tradition with great fun. I hereby invite you to Buje to join in the fun and taste excellent wines between 16 and 19 September. You will leave with great memories, new knowledge, and a smile on your face.