Together with the world most popular grape varieties such as Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, Bulgaria, and the diverse Bulgarian wine regions can offer different, unique, local wine varieties. The local grape varieties, which are used for the production of the best wines – Gamza, Broad-leaved Melnik Vine, Dimyat, Mavrud, Red Muscat, Rubin, Ruen, Red Misket and Pamid – are of great interest for the visitors of the wine museum in Pleven, Bulgaria.
Gamza (Kadarka) is a local red wine variety, which is widespread in northwest Bulgaria. This variety ripens late, and produces red dessert and table wines with bright raspberry transparent color and fruity aroma of raspberry domination. The taste is fresh, with light structure. Gamza wines are usually consumed first growth. Best quality Gamza wine can be tasted in northern Bulgaria, in cellars of the towns of Vidin and Pleven.
The broad-leaved Melnik vine is a local red variety, which only grows in southwestern Bulgaria, in the regions of Melnik, Petrich and Sandanski. The color of this wine is medium deep. Wines of this variety are excellent, with ripe cherry and herbs aroma, and in the presence of oak it develops tobacco and leather nuances. The taste of new wine is crisp, with pronounced tannins. With the maturing, the taste softens, but it remains spicy at the end. Wine, made of Broad-leaved Melnik vine with unique taste can be tasted at the wineries in the regions of Sandanski and Melnik. One of the most famous connoisseurs of the red wine from Melnik was Winston Churchill, who regularly ordered barrels of it.
Dimyat is an old Bulgarian grape variety. It is mainly grown on the Black Sea coast and in the regions of Shumen, Varna, Stara Zagora and Evksinograd. Dimyat is a typical Bulgarian white variety, which is used to make aromatic dry white wines and brandies. The grape ripens in the second half of September. It develops a fruity aroma with accents of ripe peach. The taste is mild, with pleasant freshness.
Mavrud is a very old local variety, grown near Asenovgrad, Pazardzhik, Plovdiv and the Rhodope Mountains foothills. The wine, made from it, has a saturated crimson ruby color with excellent taste and pronounced density. The flavor is juicy with a dominance of ripe berries and spices and a distinctive pleasant aroma with hints of blackberry and ripe mulberry. The best quality varietal wines develop very well in oak barrels with a powerful, complex aroma and a full-bodied well-balanced flavour.
Red Misket (Misket Cherven) is an old Bulgarian variety, widespread in the sub-Balkan region. This wine variety has an interesting color with pink shades. The aroma has herbal nuances with quince and honey. The wine made from Misket Cherven is typically dry. It is cultivated nowadays mainly in the Sungurlare Valley, and the Karlovo and Brezovo districts. Red Misket is a variety for high quality Misket wines but it can also be consumed as table grapes.
Rubin is a local variety created by the fertilization of two varieties – Nebbiolo and Syrah, created in 1944 and recognized as a variety in 1961. The variety is used for the production of high quality semi-sweet and sweet wines. These wines are deep in color and their taste is thick, with a soft finish. Their aroma is intense, fruity, with ripe blackberry domination, and in contact with oak, it develops jam nuances. The wines have good ageing potential. One can taste Rubin wine in the wineries in the regions of Plovdiv and Septemvri.
Pamid is one of the oldest varieties, growing in the Bulgarian lands. The wine has a light red color. Its flavor is fresh, with fruity nuances, an elegant body and a soft finish. Pamid wines are usually consumed new due to their low content of phenolic substances. Their taste does not develop well after contact with oak. Pamid is also good for wine blends. One can taste Pamid in the cellars in the region of Pazardzhik, Plovdiv and Pamidovo.
Ruen variety is a cross between the broad-leaved Melnik vine and Cabernet Sauvignon, recognized as a variety in 1964. It is grown on quite small areas in the region of Struma River valley. The grapes ripen late September. Berries are dense, dark blue in colour, the skin is rich in colouring matter, and the juice is colourless. Variety wines are dark red and fresh.