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Macedonian, Serbian and Albanian Vintners Shine at Vinitaly

At Vinitaly in Verona, wines from Serbia, North Macedonia, and Albania are capturing the interest of the global wine community

In the elegant corridors of Vinitaly, the renowned wine fair in Verona, the air is tinged not just with the aroma of fine Italian wines but also with a burgeoning sense of opportunity from the southeast corner of Europe. This year, alongside the classic Chiantis and Barolos, over 240 wines from Serbia, North Macedonia, and Albania vie for the attention of international connoisseurs and trade professionals.

Marko Obradović, the Director of Marketing and Education at the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, proudly notes a novel addition to this year’s display: an array of Balkan brandies and culinary delights. This move, seen as a strategic expansion of the Balkan wine industry’s global outreach, also marks the first-time inclusion of these regional gastronomic specialties at such a prestigious event.

With 1,200 major buyers roaming the halls, primarily in pursuit of Italian labels, Obradović stresses the ambition to carve out a niche for Balkan vintages. The narrative is one of ascent and ambition, as the industry continues its strategic march across the world’s wine maps—from Düsseldorf to London and soon, Shenzhen and Shanghai.

Stevan Rajta, head of the Serbian Vintners’ and Vine Growers’ Alliance, points to the critical nature of such showcases. For him, the event is a battleground not only for larger players but also for smaller, boutique wineries that seek to enhance their global presence. He lauds the regional approach to presentation, which this year was enhanced by the introduction of traditional brandies and the gastronomic charms of the Balkans, adding a layer of cultural intrigue to the vintages on display.

It seems the stars of the show are local varietals like Tamjanika and Grašac, along with Slivovitz and other fruit brandies. Such products, Rajta asserts, are poised to capture the palates of international markets, already making inroads into South America, Western Europe, Britain, and China.

This concerted effort at Vinitaly represents more than just a selling opportunity—it is a significant cultural exch

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