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Moldova and Moldovan Wines

Moldova is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe that is separated from the western edges of the Black Sea by the Odessa province of southern Ukraine. One of several former Soviet states in this region (it lies just north of Romania and Bulgaria), Moldova gained independence from Russia in 1991, and is now officially the Republic of Moldova.

Although relations between Moldova and Russia were relatively healthy at the dawn of the new millennium, in 2006 heated negotiations over the disputed territory of Transnistria led to Russia banning the importation of all Moldovan wines. The Russian pretext for this embargo was that technical analysis had revealed high levels of heavy metals and pesticides in wines imported from Moldova. Wines from Georgia, another ancient wine-producing nation just across the Black Sea, were also included in the ban. This followed derogatory statements made in 2005 by Georgia's Defense Minister, which led to the almost immediate closure of seven Georgian wineries. Moldova was less directly affected, but its wine trade unquestionably suffered due to the closure of this key export market.

Moldovan vineyards in Autumn

Viticulture and winemaking are imbued in Moldovan culture at various levels: in its history, its language and its traditions. The country's economy also benefits greatly from wine production, not only from direct sales on both local and export markets, but also from wine tourism, which is surprisingly well developed here. Moldovan winemaking underwent a hiatus during the 300-year period of Ottoman rule, when Islamic law forbade its production and consumption. But under Russian rule (1812 to 1991) the nation's wine culture recovered entirely, and it became an important supplier of wine to the motherland. Since independence, the nation has celebrated its Ziua Nationala a Vinului (National Wine Day) each year on the second weekend in October, just after the end of vintage.

Although relatively small, Moldova ranks among the most significant wine regions of Eastern Europe. Its climate is well suited to viticulture, and archaeological evidence suggests that this has been the case for a millions of years; fossils of Vitis teutonica vines dating back as far as 25 million years have been found around the northern Moldovan village of Naslavcia. Further evidence suggests that the indigenous peoples began using these grapes to make wine as early as 3000 BC. Modern Moldovan wine is made not from these ancient strains of the Vitis family, but from Vitis vinifera vines of European origin. Bordeaux varieties Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot have made their way into every Moldovan wine region, and have proved as successful here as they have everywhere else in the world. Likewise, their Burgundian counterparts Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are also commonly seen in Moldovan wines, as are Germany's Riesling and light, Italian-style Pinot Grigio.

Moldova's topography is decidedly pedestrian when compared to that of neighboring Romania, where the Transylvanian Alps (Southern Carpathians) rise to over 8000ft (2450m). Instead, the Moldovan landscape bears a stronger resemblance to that of southern Ukraine, with low rolling hills that drop steadily down towards the Black Sea. The relief rises above 1000ft (305m) only in the small area of hills just north of the capital Chisinau. It is in the southern and central zones just south of these hills that Moldova's finest terroirs are found. This undulating landscape offers the kind of variation of aspect and gradient that contributes so much to wine quality in such great wines regions as Piedmont, Tuscany and southern Burgundy.

Moldovan winters are cool and the summers are warm, but neither reaches the kind of extremes that damage vines or reduce fruit quality. Rainfall is also moderate, completing a set of conditions almost perfectly suited to viticulture. In light of this, it is hardly surprising that Moldovan wine production has remained so successful, interrupted only by the powerful forces of religion and politics.

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We found 134 wines produced in this region.
Wine Name
Grape 
Popularity
Purcari 'Negru de Purcari', Moldova Cabernet Sauvignon $20 3941
Vinaria Bostavan Black Doctor, Moldova N/A $10 4105
Exclusiv 1 Vodka, Moldova Vodka $10 17331
Firestarter Vodka, Moldova Vodka $31 19429
Exclusiv 5 Coconut Flavored Vodka, Moldova Vodka $10 21955
Dionis Club Kagor Red, Moldova N/A $13 25842
Exclusiv 7 Peach Flavored Vodka, Moldova Vodka $10 26318
Exclusiv 6 Raspberry Flavored Vodka with Moscato Rose Wine, Moldova Vodka $10 26863
Apollo Creek Red Sweet, Talmaza Valley, Moldova N/A $5 27410
Purcari 'Pinot Noir de Purcari', Moldova Pinot Noir $8 27743
Purcari 'Cabernet Sauvignon de Purcari', Moldova Cabernet Sauvignon $8 27831
Garling Collection Stradivari Granat, Moldova Cabernet Sauvignon - Merlot $11 28448
Chateau Vartely Merlot, Moldova Merlot $5 34057
Exclusiv 4 Raspberry Flavored Vodka, Moldova Vodka $10 37673
Kvint Black Stork Gold Reserve X.O. 12 Year Brandy, Moldova Brandy $21 39061
Cricova Prestige Cabernet Sauvignon, Moldova Cabernet Sauvignon $8 40269
Purcari 'Rosu de Purcari', Moldova Bordeaux Blend Red $15 40428
Cricova Prestige Codru, Moldova Cabernet Sauvignon - Merlot $8 41165
Exclusiv Moscato Sparkling Rose, Moldova Muscat $10 41356
Purcari 'Merlot de Purcari', Moldova Merlot $8 44364
Garling Collection Vinolia Isabella, Moldova Isabella $10 46633
Basavin 'Kagor' Red, Moldova Cabernet Sauvignon - Merlot $1 55330
Asconi 'Old Tavern' Special Collection Red Dessert Wine, Moldova N/A $13 57069
Apollo Creek Moscato, Talmaza Valley, Moldova Muscat $5 57777
Purcari 'Cahor de Purcari', Moldova Cabernet Sauvignon - Malbec $36 61369
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