4 April 2016

Foss Marai Tour: Romania



If the President of Foss Marai would visit this country, which are the first five locations and five experiences he should never miss?

When the President of Foss Marai returns to Romania (he has visited our country before and was impressed by its wine, people, natural beauties and cuisine), we would definitely recommend him not to miss the cities of Cluj Napoca, Constanta, Timisoara, Iasi and Brasov, each being a landmark of its corresponding region’s culture. As a professional, we are convinced he would like to visit a wine bar in each of these cities and a traditional restaurant, to better understand the specifics of this market and be surprised by the local gastronomic habits: did you know that in Romania it is customary for strong drinks to be served as appetizers? The wine that follows is a different story!



Taking into consideration the list, which is the proper pairing between local dishes and a Foss Marai bottle of wine?

We were delighted to find out that Strada di Guia 109 is a perfect match for a tenderly oven baked carp fish with a touch of garlic mayonnaise or in combination with salt water fish garnished with blue potatoes puree.

In relation with Romanian cuisine, Foss Marai brut associates perfectly with pork roulade seasoned with peasant’s oven baked potatoes or Chicken Kievskaja a la roumaine, of course!

As far as Roos is concerned, it makes a formidable pairing with Black Sea snails (rapane) or fresh water crabs cooked on steam!



How would you describe the consumer profile for this country?

Romanian consumers are generally speaking in a period of discovery and evolution as far as wine is concerned. The retail consumer that used to be almost exclusively in demi-dry wines and old brands begins to discover the modern approaches to wine and obviously find out new perspectives in quality and taste. The retail consumer is characterized by a keen interest in Romanian wines that he habitually enjoys. Horeca Clients are the favourite kind of customers for a wine seller: they are keen to discover, experiment and try new approaches to wine. On the other hand, it is only a limited number of connaisseurs that know the difference between sparkling wines though: those who can tell a Frizzante from a Spumante DOC or a DOCG are unfortunately still very few.



Globally speaking, do you observe a noticeable evolution of the Italian wine?

As it happens in many European countries, in Romania the market for imported wine shrinks each year. The reason for this phenomenon is the constant rediscovery of domestic wines. Local wine makers and brands spring like mushrooms every year, and their wines are far from being bad. In this context, Italian wine in Romania resists only in its consacrated strongholds: Italian restaurants and trattorias, but even they are losing terrain because the price competition brought by new world wines and even wines from neighbouring countries (Moldavian wines, for instance, are the most important price vs quality foreign competitors in this market).



Have you visited Foss Marai head office before? How did you feel about this experience?

Our sommelier, Stelian Stefan has had the privilege to visit the Foss Marai office and found this Italian experience  quite effervescent: „an Interesting approach of the bussiness (you can feel the personal touch of Mr. Presidente Carlo Biasiotto all over the place), focused on the long-term development and exclusively based on the quality of the wines bearing the labels Foss Marai.”