What a lovely afternoon I’ve spent at Albiana, also known as wine cellar Žaren. Situated atop a slope above Krško in the village of Nemška vas, they craft a real story of purity and style.
Albiana is a portmanteau of Albin and Ana Žaren, who bought the property in 1936 with initially farming as the main activity. However, it is only in the last twenty years that the dedication is solely on wine. During this time, they have expanded and are currently looking after twenty hectares or 90,000 vines.
They focus their production on a range of varietal wines, their Silvaner is famed, but they also produce sparkling wines and still ones marked by oak maturation.
Today’s choice is their Chardonnay hand-harvested in the year 2017 from the southwest facing vineyard Zameje. The vinification process was meticulous, taking care to prevent as much oxidation as possible. After a 16 hour cold maceration, the juice fermented in stainless vats on lees at low temperatures with constant stirring. After a total of seven months, it was bottled, and the result is impressive.
Albiana’s Chardonnay presents a crystal clear, straw yellow colour with a golden hue and dense texture.
Aromas are intense and alluring, revealing ripe peach, lemon blossom, a slight note of basil and grass, all of this gently lined by notes of sweet bread crust and butter.
A dry wine of expressed softness, with well-integrated alcohols resulting in a reasonably warm feel. We feel the freshness is ripe, but it acts lively and intricates marvellously with the minerality—a wine of equilibrium, intensity and structure. But most of all accentuated elegance and persistency with flavours of melon, peach and bread crust bind with its minerality.
A wine that is at its peak but will stay there for at least the next five years. A bottle will cost you approximately 10 Eur, and you can order it at their website, Sava valley wines, Vinezery and Welt weinshop.