Mario Sehic, is a WSET Certified Wine Educator and Diploma holder and the founder of Windsor Wine Academy in England. After living in the UK for over 22 years, Mario is now back to his Croatian roots, working in the beautiful and historic Dubrovnik, heart of the Dalmatian wine country. Mario offers personal wine tasting tours for small groups, in English, to carefully selected wine cellars and vineyards in Dubrovnik region. He has established connections with independent, family winegrowers in Croatia, so you can enjoy authentic generous tastings, lunches and meetings with the winemakers.
INTERVIEW WITH MARIO
When did you discover your passion for wine?
Very early! My grandad had a small wine yard and made wine for himself. He would let me taste somesweet wines and I still can smell his cellar when I think about it. Later, I was running my own cafe restaurant and had wines to taste to choose and that started it. Now I hold WSET Diploma and I am certified by WSET to teach wine.
What are your key highlights of the Dubrovnik wine region?
Wine, food and history! Dubrovnik is very unique, old and beautiful city. Wine - as unique as city itself ,Plavac mali, one of the parents of Zinfandel, Posip - white wine from Korcula island and many more... Food is amazing, best seafood for me anywhere, olive oil and local cheese and that kind of food paired with fantastic wines is always like a new experience for me.
When are the best times to visit Dubrovnik?
From April to October. Dubrovnik has a typical Mediterranean climate so you can swim in the Adriaticsea for 6-8 months a year. Spring and summer are great for tasting wines and autumn for picking grapes and seeing first hand how wines are made. During the summer months in Dubrovnik there is Dubrovnik festival with every day open concerts and number of other cultural activities.
What is a traditional local wine and food pairing dish?
Traditional wine and food pairing would be very young white Posip or Dubrovacka Malvazija with seafood. Plavac mali is mostly paired with bbq meat dishes where tannins works its magic with proteins from meat.
What would be your top 3 tips for the keen wine traveller?
First use local guide! With limited time for visits you might be very surprised what local knowledge can give you, some hidden jams wines and wine yards you would probably miss on your own. Second "Ask, Ask, Ask!", always ask about wines, use that knowledge from your local experts. And third book well in advance, it is always good idea to book well in advance especially if you can cancel in case you have to without loosing money. Wine activities are seasonal and with small groups tend to fillup quickly.
Finally, which wine region in the world would you like to visit next?
South Africa is on my list for next year. I have been following wine industry there for some time, wines are getting to be world class and scenery is amazing!