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(E) Is Croatia the new California?
By Nenad N. Bach | Published  02/7/2005 | Politics | Unrated
(E) Is Croatia the new California?


Is Croatia the new California?

Nenad, We made the Sunday Wash. Post Style section and this was a very,very successful event.  Sve najbolje, Steve Rukavina

The Reliable Source -- The Style Section
By Richard Leiby
The Washington Post
Sunday, February 6, 2005; Page D03

This Wine Has Croatians Proud Enough to Pop

• Is Croatia the new California? Well, we don't expect to see the next wine-region movie set there (à la "Sideways"), but Croatian officials are finding an appreciative audience for their grape products on Capitol Hill. Croatian red zinfandel and other wines flowed last week when the Congressional Croatian Caucus was launched with 40 representatives and two senators signing on as bipartisan members.
At a Hill reception hosted by the Croatian Embassy, the buzz, so to speak, concerned a newly discovered link between California and Croatian zinfandel grapes -- specifically, the Croatian varietal called crljenak kastelanski. The embassy's deputy chief, Marijan Gubic, tells us this "zinfandel mystery" took 35 years of genetic sleuthing across two continents to solve. (Clearly, some topics besides joining the European Union warrant keen attention.)
The caucus is co-chaired by Reps. Peter Visclosky (D-Ind.) and George Radanovich (R-Calif.). Radanovich also co-chairs the popular 250-member Congressional Wine Caucus, whose Web site quotes Robert Louis Stevenson: "Wine is bottled poetry." The Croats have enlisted nine other Californians, as well as Sens. George Voinovich (R-Ohio) and Rick Santorum (R-Pa.).
"They're not all Croatian, but they support Croatia," said Gubic, adding, "We're not known yet in America as a wine-producing country, but increasingly we hope to be." Given its thirst to understand international affairs, Congress seems a good place to start.

With Chris Richards


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