Romania is one of the few countries in the world that can boast a tradition in culture multimillenary grape-vine. Archaeological discoveries in our country attest activity traces vineyards for more than 5,000 years.
Romanian territories cultivated grape-vine is of local origin and was not brought, as in other countries. On the way natural selection, made by generations of farmers on Romanian land of wild grape berries were obtained local varieties of fruit-bearing vines. The number of these varieties is hard to say, some of them disappeared over time. So, besides the fact that we were and are grown grape-vine, we were and are, at the same time, creators of varieties, thus, from ancient times, to enrich universal vineyards.
At present, in the Romanian area, remaining nearly 30 local varieties, which by their uniqueness, are an asset of national heritage: Feteasca Neagra, Negru de Causani, Babeasca Neagra,Ardeleanca, Galbena de Odobesti, Grasa de Cotnari, Cramposie, Francuse, Iordana, Majarca Alba, Feteasca Alba . We may add that some of these Romanian varieties are even older than varieties from other countries. In the last century, especially after the destruction of vineyards by phylloxera Romanian, Romanian winegrowers have placed in culture and foreign varieties, choosing them in time with the most valuable ones, that were better adapted to the natural conditions of our country. Thus, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling Italian, Traminer Roz, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon have fully contributed to improving and diversifying the range of Romanian wines.
Dragasani Part of the wine region – a Muntenia and Oltenia Hills
In Drăgăşani vineyard, over millennia of its existence have been cultivated over 60 local varieties, domestic and foreign, but only about a third were promoted in
pre-and post-phylloxera vineyard in its various stages, the rest being cultivated temporarily, with ephemeral existence, some of which are now extinct. Recommended varieties today are:
Cardinal, Victoria, Chasselas dore, Chasselas roz, Afuz Ali, Muscat de Hamburg, Muscat d’Adda, Cramposie selectionata, Rosioara, Babeasca neagra, Sangioveze, Fetească regala, Riesling Italian, Tamaioasa Romaneasca, Muscat Ottonel, Sauvignon, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot noir.
In 1850, French scientists brought to France for trial, several species of grape vines in America. At that time, they did not know phylloxera – an insect only visible to the naked eye, which stings vine- roots and suck sap, causing drying plant. It coexisted harmoniously with American varieties that resist punctures, but became enemies of European varieties, which destroyed the table, leaving the continent for several years, running out of liquor of Bacchus.
When did phylloxera start attack in Romania?
- The new invasion occurred after 1877, when the French botanist Ananescu brought some American vine cuttings (infested with insects invisible), which he planted in his vineyard on the hill Chiţorani, near Ploiesti. The year1884 is considered the official border between the period post phylloxera and pre phylloxera Romanian viticulture. After this date, when almost 10,000 hectares of old Romanian vineyards were already destroyed, they were replaced with hybrid varieties native Americans (Isabella – strawberries, Lidia – pink strawberries, Delaware – delivara) in parallel with the root grafting to the overseas. Planting hybrids proved wrong in time as wines made from American varieties have many flaws.