Thinking About Obscure Regions and Varietals

Yes, these are the types of thoughts that run through my head when I am sitting in a fairly dull training class all week. If I get lucky, I’ll remember them at lunch time so I can jot some notes down, and that’s what happened today (yay for lunch, the bright spot in an otherwise deadly boring day).

So as I sat in training, mesmorized, of course, by the topic at hand (types of government contracts and the risk assumed by the government based on each type, thrilling, huh?) my mind was running over some of the more obscure wines I’ve had lately. And I was wondering, what is the most obscure region or varietal you have tried in recent memory?

I didn’t write about this one (or at least I’m fairly certain I didn’t….I can’t find it if I did) but we had a red (forgive me, the type is slipping my mind) from Bulgaria this year. We have this kind of kitschy little Bulgarian place near our apartment building (very tasty and interesting food, especially for a cold night) and they carry Bulgarian wine on the menu. I remember thinking it was really reasonably priced for a restaurant ($18) and I really enjoyed the bottle, though it did need to be a touch cooler. I’d drink it again, and next time I’d remember. I think that was easily the most obscure region from which I’ve tasted a bottle.

So the question remains, what varietal or region has been your most obscure?


5 Responses

  1. Excellent question! Let’s see, I had an Argentinian Torrontes last year…and a French Pineau d’Aunis, which was a biodynamic wine too. I’ve had a couple of interesting Greek wines, such as a Moschofiler from the Moschofilero region and a couple of Xynomavro wines. I had a great Pinotage from Southern Right Winery in South Africa. I guess overall my choices are still fairly pedestrian, though!

  2. Sonadora–My wife and I traveled to Vietnam in 1995 for part of our honeymoon (it’s actually a very romatic country) and were in the beautiful city of Hue on the banks of the Perfume River. We were dining with a German couple and the proprietor took a liking to us and brought out some off the menu delicacies, including the local semi-sweet rice wine (not sake) in a half bottle. It was terrible, kind of a cross between paint thinner and Kool-Aide, but I drank up out of respect and he gave me a bottle to take home. I think I have it stashed somewhere safe . . . .

    Cheers, Barrld

  3. You inspired me to go out and buy a sparkling wine from New Mexico to add to my Connecticut white that I bought a few weeks ago. For me, it’s the US wine regions springing up everywhere that seem “exotic” to me!

  4. Huevos-Sounds pretty good. I think I had a sparkling wine from Argentina recently, it wasn’t half bad and almost made it as my WBW entry that month!

    Barrld-Vietnam, eh? Now there’s a place I wouldn’t think of for wine. And that sounds disgusting…I hope by safe place you mean the grabage!

    Dr.Debs-Sparkling from New Mexico. That’s different! Have you tried the CT one yet? I’m headed up there in a few weeks and might have to pick up a CT bottle at the package store! I guess wines from the various states never struck me as odd….I started my wine drinking with Germany and then moved directly to VA with some NC thrown in before ever making it to CA wines!

  5. Speaking of an exotic wine location…how about San Francisco?! There is an urban winery there called Crushpad where you can custom create your very own wine. Now you don’t have to quit your government job for the wine business. You can make wine from where you are! Check them out at or

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