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DOC Târnave

Wines from the heart of Transylvania

Târnave DOC area is located inside the Carpathian Mountains, in the heart of Transylvania region, more precisely located within the basin formed between Târnava Mică and Târnava Mare rivers. From an administrative and territorial point of view, the region is located within Alba, Sibiu, and Mureş counties.

The vineyard has been mentioned since ancient times, being famous for its white wines, characterized by fruitiness, freshness, and high acidity. Also, according to wine literature, Târnave DOC is the birthplace of two of the most popular, appreciated, and expressive Romanian white varieties: Fetească Albă and Fetească Regală.

From a historical point of view, the first mention of Târnave DOC region dates back to 1532, when it was mentioned in a map from “Chorographia Transylvaniae” written by the famous Saxon chronicler and scholar, Johannes Honterus (14981549). Also, in the writing “La Vie privée à Venise, depuis de origine jusqu’à la chute de la République” written by P. Molmenti, the wines from the center of Transylvania are mentioned since 1173. Wines which during that time had an excellent reputation at the Court of Venice, in the reign of Duke Sebastian Ziani. At the same time, the Milanese author, Pietro Casala, eulogiously described the “generous and mature” wines coming from the Carpathian Mountains. Also, information about winemaking practices and wine production around 1896 are mentioned in the works of Herczegh Mihály.

However, the wine history of this region would not have existed in the absence of a unique set of natural factors ideal for cultivating the grapevines and achieving memorable typical Târnave DOC wines.

  • Southwestern slopes that offer natural protection to the grapevines against the spring and autumn winds and hoarfrost;
  • altitude varying between 250-600 meters;
  • brown soil with alternative layers of clay, waterproof marl, sandstone, and sand;
  • moderate temperate-continental climate with warm summers, harsh and humid winters, and long and gentle autumns;
  • the Carpathian Mountains that naturally protect the region against the cold currents from East and North East;
  • optimal level of rainfall, humidity, solar exposure, and heat.

In terms of terroir, the particularity of the region lies in the misty days from the end of the summer, September and October, a phenomenon that leads to slow grape ripening, along with the conservation of the aromas and the high level of acidity which is typical for the area of Târnave DOC. Also, during the ripening process, the day/ night temperature variation (22°C/72°F12°C/54°F) contributes significantly to the quality of the grapes. A level of acidity which favors the production of sparkling wines and brandies.

The white wines produced in Târnave DOC are characterized as fresh due to their high acidity, smooth texture, minerality, along with floral, fruity, and slightly spicy aromas. While the red wines can be described by delicate body, roundness, feminine texture, and clean-cut aromas of forest red fruits.

One of the representative producers from Târnave Vineyard is Villa Vinèa. The story of the winery begins in 2001, when businessman and wine enthusiast Heiner Oberrauch discover in Mica (Mureş County) a picturesque place with great potential for wine production. In 2006 the first grapevines were planted, and in 2012 the winery was inaugurated. One of the main advantages of the winery is having Celestino Lucin, considered the best winemaker in Italy in 2009, a member in the Villa Vinèa team. The winery produces wines made from local varieties such as Fetească Regală, Fetească Albă, and Fetească Neagră, but also from international varieties like Rhine Riesling, Muscat Ottonel, Gewürztraminer, Merlot, and Pinot Noir. However, the particularity of the winery stands in making wines from grape varieties with German and Austrian origin, like Kerner and Zweigelt, highly appreciated by the Oberrauch family and cultivated with notable results in Târnave Vineyard. Based on the terroir and potential of the region, Villa Vinèa will soon launch a range of sparkling wines.

Confirming the unique reputation of Transylvania as a place full of history, legends, mystery and picturesque surroundings, Târnave DOC region impresses with a new wine revival, marked by the unique labels of Villa Vinèa winery.

Grape varieties which can be used to produce wines with “TârnaveControlled Designation of Origin.

White Grape Varieties:

Gewürztraminer, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Muscat Ottonel, Sauvignon Blanc, Neuburger,Italian Riesling, Rhine Riesling, Fetească Albă, Fetească Regală, Furmint.

Red Grape Varieties:

Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Fetească Neagră, Syrah, Merlot.

DOC Lechinţa

Lechinţa DOC (Designation of Origin) is formed from several villages located in the heart of Transylvania, where viticulture and wine production were brought to life in the past years. Located at the base of the Carpathian Mountains, between two rivers, this region, forgotten in the past decades, is beginning to rebuild its status with great, memorable wines.

In this area predominates brown soils and clay-iluvial, rich in calcium and iron. Which are ideal for viticulture, due to:

  • medium texture;
  • moderate acidity;
  • good fertility.
The climate is temperate-continental and the grape ripening is provided by:
  • hot and humid summers, followed by warm autumns;
  • Eastern and Western exposure;
  • Planting the vines at an altitude of 300-500 meters high.
However, what distinguishes Lechinţa Vineyard are the foggy days of late summer and early autumn. They are important because they offer:
  • slow ripening of the grapes;
  • preservation of flavors;
  • maintaining a high level of acidity. 
In a certain realm of Transylvania, the mystery and myths are mingled with the local charm of the village Batoş,Liliac Winery’s birthplace”. Here, the viticulture tradition is very old, dating back to ancient times (IV – V cent BC), as confirmed in the writings of Homer and Herodotus. Subsequently, a new chapter was written in the 12thcentury, when the German colonists arrived in Transylvania, producing a real renaissance in the art of creating wines.

This story is continued to the present by Austrian businessman Alfred Michael Beck. Along with winemaker Rudolf Krizan and a Romanian-Austrian team, they helped the wines from Liliac Winery to make quite a name for themselves.

Cultivated on an area of about 52 hectares, Liliac Wines surprised everyone primarily through innovation. And they achieved this by creating elegant, mature and savory red wines, with a long aftertaste, as nobody ever made before in Lechinţa. Thus, Feteasca Neagră was simply reinvented.

At Liliac Winery, the Fetească “Family” is reunited. Alongside the red variety, there are Fetească Albă and Fetească Regală – white wines with high acidity, light body, floral notes, citrus aromas and great minerality.
“Orange wine” is the winery’s latest surprise. The method consists in obtaining extractive white wine, using the winemaking style for red wines.

Liliac is a young winery that expresses the best part of the terroir from DOC Lechinţa and brings a new and powerful “facet” to the wines of Romania. Grape varieties that one can find here: Sauvignon Blanc, Muscat Ottonel, Pinot Gris, Fetească Regală, Fetească Albă, Chardonnay.