A Map of Romania We often don’t hear much about Romanian wines, but Romania is in fact the 5th largest wine producer in Europe; only France, Spain, Italy, and Portugal produce more wine than Romaina.  With a history of winemaking that goes back over 2,500 years, coupled with unique geography (mountain ranges, valleys, coastal winds, and several microclimates), Romaina’s land is perfect for growing grapes and producing wine.  Like other European countries, Romania boasts several varieties of indigenous varietals, as well as some western ones.  Some more well-known native varietals include Grasa de Cotnari, Feteasca Alba, Feteasca Regala, and Tamaiosa Romaneasca.  For reds, varietals include Feteasca Neagra, Babeasca Neagra, Cadarca, and Negru Vartos.  Romaina’s largest wine-producing region is known for its production of Cotnari wines, which are sweet dessert wines similar to Tokaj.  The southern regions of Muntenia and Oltenia make excellent red and white wines (as do Crisana and Maramures in the west), while wines from the picturesque Transylvanian plateau are mostly white.  If you’re looking to try a decent Romanian wine, here are a few picks that range from about $10 to $25:
  • Prince Mircea Merlot, 2008
  • Prahova Valley Reserve Pinot Noir, 2009
  • Terra Romana Pinot Noir, 2009
  • Castel Starmina Riesling, 2001
Perhaps you’ll find one of these to your liking?    Noroc!  (That's “cheers” in Romanian.)