Wine stories

Words from winelovers

Adriatic wines in Czech Republic

Wine making at east side of Adriatic coast goes all the way from ancient times. Started to bloom during roman empire and continued till nowadays. It has never been commodity activity. Wine makers from this region have done it with lot of passion and dedication placing experience and learning from previous generations and continuously exploring new ways in both, wine yards farming and production methodology upgrades.

There is interesting fact about Dalmatia, south part of east Adriatic coast. Due to “wild” tectonics within carbonate rocks, karst morphology was formed in its “by the book” appearance. This fact caused that Dalmatia has more than 25 endemic wine grape sorts. It is more than anywhere in such territory range. In paleontology, it is called allopatric speciation – when certain species stay isolated and continue development in own direction. Most famous example are lizards from Galapagos.

Due to devotion to quality and tradition, Adriatic wine makers never compromised quality to get cheaper production process or massive production. Therefore, for premium product, premium price was always standing behind, all the time being aware about competitive disadvantage. Still, at stayed as choice – quality and tradition before profits.

One more important activity is present in this region. Tourism is important branch of economy in Croatia and it is, in biggest parts, realized at Adriatic coast. More than 100 years tourists from Europe and worldwide are visiting Croatian Adriatic coast.

Since beginning lot of Czechs have been visiting it. In old days due to fact Croatia and Czech were part of same monarchy. After WW2 Czechs were among first ones coming to summer holidays in country still devastated by war. And continued to come, also, because, during communism times, it was easier to come to Yugoslavia than to western countries. In ‘90s after wars in ex-Yugoslavia territory, again, Czechs were first to come back for holidays.

In a way, connection between Czech and Adriatic coast exists for a long time. Even though, Czechs are much more beer than wine drinkers, wine was always on the table during holidays.And here we go with touch point of project. How and where to export Adriatic wines being aware of premium quality and authentical story behind and fight limitations as high price versus wine big players from different parts of world? We decided to play own game and emphasize advantages instead trying to decrease disadvantages. High quality, history behind, unique geological story makes it real boutique business. So, should to be promoted this way with pride. Why Czech? Because lot of connection, joint history and affiliation between 2 nations exists.

Czech-Croatian project team went to Adriatic cost to meet number of wine makers and make selection of “best fit” portfolio complementary among itself. Upon meeting and selection of adequate portfolio, project was walking on two lanes. First one was to make smart “guerilla” plan of communication and credentialing but, in same time, not to spend fortune as this one is long run. This one has been done by Martin Kopecky, wine expert and, if may say, wine businessman, Orbico’s consultant and partner in Adriatic wines project.

Other lane was to establish supply chain that would not tremendously increase price of already premium prices product. Here, Orbico played role of middleman and supply chain is organized in a way that all wine makers, who participate in project, deliver wine only to Orbico DC near Zagreb. Orbico collects it and sends all together with one delivery to Czech where Orbico Czech crew is dealing with import, regulatory and warehousing. Such settlement contributed a lot to have efficient vale chain and to have minimal cost between winery and consumer in Czech.

Once, wine arrived at Czech market, credentialing and commercial activities started through exclusive wine gallery where lot of celebrities and trendsetters are gathering, via selected specialized web pages and listed in selected restaurants. All this followed by chain of degustation activities within targeted groups. Due to current situation with Covid-19 virus, some of activities had to be cancelled but from other side online communication and e-commerce accelerated.

Adriatic wines in Czech Republic for us, project crew, is more than business. It is beautiful wine story about history, geography, geology, tradition, hard work, two friendly nations. It is inspiration, challenge and long race that we are committed to run and never finish because there is always one more mile to go…

Branko Jović

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