When you think about wines, the best wines, in the world, Turkey and Turkish wines are not among those you think of. The first two would probably come to mind would have been French and Italian wines, which is fair enough!
However, the best Turkish wine is underrated. What’s more, more and more producers are looking abroad day by day due to strict alcohol laws in Turkey. So, paradoxically, these strict laws one hand damage the market value of Turkish wine in Turkey. But on the other hand, it raises the popularity of Turkish wines around the world.
Winemaking History of Turkey
Turkey has an ancient winemaking history stretching back millennia. It is well before the classic civilizations of Greece and Rome. The history helped to cement the popularity of wine as a cultural cornerstone. However, it is only recently that Turkey’s wine industry has grown sufficiently to become recognized internationally.
Best Turkish Wines Based on Grape Varieties
Like Italy or France, Turkey benefits from a vast number of indigenous grape varieties. Nevertheless, wine lovers beyond Turkey’s borders are not familiar with many of the varieties. Varieties such as Kalecik Karası and Narince occasionally blended with international varieties, appear on many labels and really showcase the diversity on offer.
International Popularity of Turkis Wines
Turkish wine is even picking up awards. And rightly so – the many regions and sub-regions are developing individual identities. Just as an example, Thrace, the Aegean Coast, and Cappadocia are among those producing the highest quality wines.
Although Turkey is one of the world’s biggest grape producers, people use only a tiny percentage for winemaking. The majority of grapes, on the other hand, are being grown for table grapes.
The promotion of alcohol has been illegal since 2013. The prohibition encompasses everything from advertising to wine tastings. This has stalled the wine industry’s domestic growth and so many producers are now seeking success in international markets.
The List of Best Turkish Wines
* Pasaeli, 6N Karasakiz Merlot, Turkey
Pasaeli, founded by Seyit Karagözoglu in 2000, was a real discovery at the recent Wines of Turkey. Tasting in London with wines from both international and indigenous varieties is showing real personality. This is a blend of both; 18% Merlot with 82% Karasakiz (which translates as ‘black chewing gum’).
Chasing for Other Best Turkish Wines
Recently several Turkish wine companies have been experimenting with Pinot Noirs. However, Ma’adra makes the only decent one you may find. Other options include chardonnays, cabernets, and syrahs.
If you’re looking for a good cheap wine, Tigris (made by the Kavaklıdere company) is one of your best options. Tigris blends Öküzgözü, Boğazkere, and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. The wine also has very little tannin taste, giving a taste slightly sweeter than other wines.
This Cappadocian wine company offers several single grape and blended options at very reasonable prices. A blend of Syrah, Öküzgözü, Boğazkere, and Kalecik Karası is highly recommended.
These wines cultivated by a Syrian Christian community in Mardin can be difficult to find and a bit pricey, but have a very robust flavor. You’re likely to find it at small corner tekel shops and sometimes at Carrefour. You’ll recognize it from the Arabic writing on the bottle.
Based in Bozcaada, Corvus makes wine from both Turkish and European grapes, including Syrah and Cabernet, as well as blends that combine the two.
Umurbey makes a wonderful Cabernet and one of the few Merlots you mah have been enjoyed. A stellar choice if you’re craving more common Western grapes rather than indigenous Turkish grapes.
Kutman specializes in fruit-based wines, including a lovely pomegranate wine reminiscent of the one lovely Uyghur restaurant in Beijing (best served chilled). So many fruit wines in Istanbul are a vile Manischewitz-level sweet, but Kutman actually manages to get it right.
This brand specializes in pure öküzgözü and has a lovely sensuous flavor.
This wine specializes in blends of grapes such as merlot, shiraz, and öküzgözü and is an excellent deal for the price. It is also widely available at any Migros or tekel shop.
This pungent and robust blend of boğazkere and öküzgözü is a delightful treat, especially after a meal.
So, hopefully, you’ll find our article useful. Moreover, share your comments with us below which Turkish wine you’ve tried and liked most!