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Macedonia is a mountainous, landlocked country
in southeast Europe with a long history of wine
production. Tikves, the major wine region, is on the
plains in the center of the country. Soft, rolling hills
define the landscape, and the climate consists of
long, hot summers and cool, rainy winters.
The Rkaciteli from Tikves makes a
lovely aperitif to sip on its own, but
it also pairs wonderfully with food.
Its acidity and bright flavors make
it exceptionally versatile. Fish and
shellfish are natural pairings, as are
Asian flavors such as Malaysian
curries, Vietnamese noodles or Thai
rice dishes. The Rkaciteli's elevated
acidity will allow it to work with
citrus- or vinegar-based salads and
Tikves is the largest and most
important winery in Macedonia.
Vineyards all over the region,
produce a host of local varieties
like Rkaciteli, Plavac and Vranec,
as well as international varieties
like Chardonnay and Riesling.
and meaning “red stem”—
originated in Georgia (where it is
spelled "Rkatsiteli") and is one of the
oldest known grape varieties.
The origins of Rkaciteli date back
to at least 3,000 BC, as determined
by archaeological digs and carbondated
seeds. The fascinating and
delightful nose produces scents of
orange blossom, jasmine, white
peach and apples. On its complex
palate, look for pineapple, fennel,
papaya, marzipan and apricot. With
wonderfully zingy acidity, Rkaciteli is
a delightful, refreshing white.