Moldova – The Grape Country
Shaped as a bunch of grapes, Moldova is situated in the South-East of Europe, sandwiched between Ukraine and Romania, in the Black Sea basin, where the vine originates. The country has a fragmented relief, with low hills, sunny plateaus and plains, crossed by a lot of streams which flow into the two big rivers, Prut and Dniester. Its climate is moderately-continental with influences from the Black Sea. Located at 46-47˚ latitude, just like other famous wine regions in Europe, the vineyards have a terroir suited for the production of quality red wine, in the southern regions and mainly white wine in the central part of the country.
The Wine of Moldova has always been described by legends. The most famous one is about a stork that brought fresh grape to starving Moldovan warriors and gave them the power to prevail.
Crafted for centuries and generations of winemakers, today the Moldovan grape is expressing itself through unique wines ready to conquer the world.
Moldova has 112 thousand hectares of vineyard planted with over 30 types of technical varieties. There are 4 historical wine regions: Valul lui Traian (South West), Stefan Voda (South East), Codru (Center), and Balti (North); first three are destined for the production of wines with protected geographic indication.
The history of Wine of Moldova is vast, the first vines were recorded here 7000 years BC, while, according to archeological relics, five thousand years ago (3000 BC) Dacians (Thracians) were able to make grape wine. One verse in the old Iliad poem (8th century BC) says: „Greek warriors went to Thracia to find wine”. Viticulture reached its highest level of development during Middle Ages, in the 15th century, during the reign of Stefan the Great. Following the annexation to the Russian Empire in 1812, winemaking drove the interest of the Russian aristocrats and Moldovan wine became prestigious at the Tsar’s residence and also in Europe.
The first Gold Medal wine from Moldova was awarded already at the World Exhibition in Paris back in 1878.
Currently the wine industry is privately owned and, as a result of significant legal and sector reforms, with support of international experts, has aligned to the European and international standards, preserving at the same time its century old traditions. The industry employs about 250,000 people and generates an estimated 3.2% of GDP and 7.5% percent of the country’s exports.