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Work trip to Bessarabia with the European project Geographical Indications in Ukraine. Kolonist winery: “We make the wine for others, as we would do it for ourselves”.
The Ukrainian “Wine and Taste Road” united the most interesting places for wine and gastronomic tourism in the Danube Bessarabia. Among them – wineries, cheesemakers, productions of meat delicacies, as well as natural and historical locations in the region. The route starts in Odessa and runs through the whole of Bessarabia. “Road” is a product of the project “Support for the Development of the Geographic Designation System in Ukraine”. The initiator of the project is the European Union, the goal is the development of gastronomic and agronomic tourism.
Often, after visiting the Kolonist family winery, one can hear the phrase: “I went on a tour to the winery, but I ended up in the house of the hospitable Hosts.” “We create traditions” is the idea around which the Kolonist winery was created. This bold motto was chosen by Ivan Plachkov for his project. Brave, like his ambitious idea of making honest wine profitable by the hands of Ukrainians in Ukraine. Ivan and his wife Alla showed us their winery, without hiding anything, with genuine pleasure. First of all, because this is not just a business, but a reflection of the inner world of the owners. You will not find any unnecessary things or details here. And everything that you see is the pride of the family. 15 years for a winery is probably not much, but for young Ukraine it is a whole era. Thanks to energy, wisdom, vision, and great love, Ivan and Alla have created so much over the years that it seems as if they have lived not 15, but all 150 years.
The terroir, on which the Colonist vineyards are located, has a unique combination of climatic and natural conditions. The largest freshwater lake in Europe, Yalpug, creates a mild Mediterranean microclimate, nourishes moisture and reflects the sun’s rays. The terrain on the eastern slopes of the lake forms the effect of a wind tunnel – here the wind blows on the vines for about 300 days a year, so they are less susceptible to diseases, and this allows to minimize the chemical treatment of the vineyards. Clay-gravel soils are rich in life-giving microelements; in summer, the temperature at the soil surface reaches + 60°C, which also naturally protects the vines from pests.
Being one of the most progressive Ukrainian wineries, “Kolonist” has been welcoming tourists for a long time. I first visited here back in 2011. Now this location, which gives an idea of the high level of development of Ukrainian winemaking, will become the star of the first Ukrainian wine road.