Melinda and Alfredo met during university study of viticulture and enology in Zagreb some 30 years ago. They shared the same bench. I didn’t ask if it was love at first sight. But I’m quite sure that many people, especially those visiting Istria, told me they instantly fell in love with their wines, charming and unpretentious as themselves. One or two generations back, Alfredo’s ancestors, Istrian peasants who produced wine only for their own use at the time, began the wine story of family Cossetto.
The heritage of these old times is kept in a vineyard with more than 40-year-old vines. Alfredo is especially proud of this piece of land because it gives rich and complex Malvasia that is great for aging, so that it reaches its peak after two years. The one from 2009 was alive and joyful as a little kid. Both this old vineyard and the younger ones where red varietals predominate (in total 7 hectares) are located only a few kilometers west from their house and winery. In 1994 the young couple came back to Istria, brought modern technology and progressive ideas into the cellar, experimented and learned. Soon they had two daughters, Gracija and Denis.
«Already in elementary school Denis started to help us, although only with her nose, in wine blending. For her it is a beautiful game», says Alfredo while we enjoy homemade Istrian pršut. Rotweiler Don looks at us imploringly asking for a piece.
The style of Cossetto red wines, Mozaik and Cabernet Sauvignon, immediately gets imprinted in your memory. The former is an unusual blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Istrian Borgonja and Merlot. It will win everybody, especially women, at first with its sensual scent of violet and iris, and then with its velvety texture in the mouth followed by a bite into a bitter cherry. The Cab is very similar but not so aromatic and with a stronger body. For both wines they use short macerations, 5-6 days, so they say, which is enough to get aromas and fruity flavors but avoid the extraction of rough tannins.
«These are not big but cute wines. Who knows, if in a few years the financial situation allows us, we’ll also try to make powerful reds by using long maceration and barrel aging of minimum 3-4 years. We definitely want to avoid wild tannins because we don’t like that», says Melinda.
- Region: Istria and Kvarner
- Ambience: Rustic, Romantic, Wine geek
- Good for: Breakfast, Tapas
- Services: Tastings with snacks, Tastings with food pairings, Multilingual
- Onsite shop: Yes
- Price range: reasonable