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Comprehensive description of all European growing areas, their grape varieties, traditions and legal rules with maps.

Description to Romania

The Republic of Romania (Romanian România, derived from the Latin Romanus) in south-eastern Europe with its capital Bucharest covers 238,397 km². The country lies on the Black Sea and stretches in a westerly direction across the Carpathian Arc to the Pannonian Plain. It borders Bulgaria to the south, Serbia and Hungary to the west, and Ukraine and Moldova to the north and east. The state is divided into 41 counties (Județe) and the capital Bucharest.

Rumänien - Landkarte


With 6,000 years of wine history, Romania is one of the oldest and most traditional wine-growing countries in Europe. The Greek poet Homer already mentioned Thracian wines in his Iliad in the 8th century BC and the historian Herodotus (482-425 BC) tells of the wine trade of the Greek colonists on the Black Sea coast. German settlers from the Rhine-Moselle region followed the call of Hungarian King Géza II (1130-1162), the ruler of the area at the time, and revived wine-growing in Transylvania in the 12th century. In the 18th century, they were the Swabians brought into the country by the Habsburg ruler Maria Theresa (1717-1780). The today part of Moldavia historical landscape Bessarabia was inhabited mainly by Romanians at the beginning of the 19th century and belonged to Romania from 1917 to 1940.

Wine-growing regions

Romania belongs to the temperate climate zone and lies on the same latitude as France. Balanced rainfall, warm summers and long, dry autumns are ideal conditions for viticulture. However, the individual parts of the country differ climatically due to the natural barrier of the Carpathians. Transylvania to the west of the Carpathians is still characterised by the maritime climate of the Atlantic winds. However, the Carpathians prevent these from reaching the east and south of the country. In Moldova (east of the Carpathians), a continental climate prevails with cold air currents from Ukraine. In Wallachia (south of the Carpathians) and Dobruja there are Mediterranean influences. The three most important regions are Moldova, Muntenia and Oltenia, where about 80% of Romanian wines are produced.

During the communist era, production was in state hands. Due to the political upheaval, a privatisation wave with many micro-owners began in 1990. The leading production companies merged into a private export-distribution company. 487 wineries are registered as producers of authentic wines. A certification system for the origin and authenticity of wines enables traceability through a QR code (see picture in the middle). There are 33 DOC/DOCC areas for quality wines or predicate wines(PDO = protected designation of origin) with 20,000 hectares and 12 IG areas for country wines(PGI = protected geographical indication) with about 6,500 hectares. The map shows the regions with their typical wine types. What Tokaj is for Hungary, the similar wine type Cotnari is for Romania. This traditional wine was somewhat forgotten and has been revived.

Rumänien - Karte, Flasche, QR-Code-Siegel und Grasa de Cotnari


The region lies in the southwest of the country on the border with Serbia and Hungary. The wine-growing areas are Buzias-Silagiu, Dealul-Tirolului, Minis (known for its red wines from Cadarca and Cabernet Sauvignon), Moldova-Noua, Recas, Severinului and Teremia-Mare (known for its white wines from Riesling Italian = Welschriesling).

Crisana and Maramures

The two regions are located in the northwest on the borders with Hungary and Ukraine. The wine-growing areas are Diosig, Simleul-Silvaniei and Valea lui Mihai. Red wines and white wines.

Dobrogea (Dobruja)

The region is located in the extreme southeast on the Black Sea and is bordered on the west by the Danube (Dunarea). The wine-growing areas are Istria-Babadag, Murfatlar, Ostrov and Sarica-Niculitel. In Romania's sunniest climate with low rainfall, soft red and rosé wines grow here.

Moldova (Moldavia)

The largest region with one third of the vineyard area lies east of the Carpathians in the east of the country on the border to Moldova and Ukraine. The wine-growing areas are Bujor, Cotesti, Cotnari, Covurlui, Dealul Bujorului, Husi, Iasi, Ivesti, Nicoresti, Odobesti, Panciu (known for its sparkling wines), Tutova and Zeletin.

Muntenia (Great Wallachia)

The region with the capital Bucharest is located in the south in the Southern Carpathians. The wine-growing areas are Dealurile Buzaului, Dealul Mare, Pietroasele, Samburesti and Stefanesti. Here there are the highest average temperatures in Romania. Today, the hill country is best known for its red wines and rosés made from international varieties. In the times of the USSR, these wines were preferably sweet.

Oltenia (Little Wallachia)

The region lies in the southwest of the country. The wine-growing areas are Corcova, Crusetu, Dealurile-Craiovei, Drăgășani, Drincea, Plaiurile-Drincei, Sadova-Corabia, Segarcea and Targu-Jiu. Here, excellent red wines are made from the autochthonous variety Fetească Neagră and from Cabernet Sauvignon. The German winery Reh Kendermann acquired 350 hectares of vineyards here in 2001 and founded the "Carl Reh Winery".

Transilvania (Transylvania)

The region in the centre is especially known for its white wines. German immigrants brought many of their own grape varieties with them. The wine-growing areas are Alba Iulia, Bistrita-Nasaud, Lechinta, Sebes-Apold and Tarnave.

Grape variety list

In the 1960s, many new vineyards were planted. In 2021, 180,378 hectares of vineyards were designated. The annual wine production amounts to between three and four million hectolitres. About 75% are white wines, 25% red wines. A total of 163 grape varieties with 38,395 hectares are classified as "Noble Winegrape Varieties" (54,730 white, 3,943 rosé, 1,762 grey, 26,393 black). Romania also has a significant production for table grapes; the most important are Afus Ali, Chasselas, Muscat d'Hamburg, Italia and Victoria. The grape variety index (ONVPV Romania):

Grape variety


Synonyms or Romanian name


Fetească Regală White Danasana 12.213
Fetească Albă white Dievcie Hrozno 12.032
Merlot red - 11.109
Welschriesling white Riesling Italian, Graševina 6.964
Sauvignon Blanc white - 5.677
Cabernet Sauvignon red - 5.384
Aligoté white - 5.141
Muscat Ottonel white Tămâioasă Ottonel 5.124
Fetească Neagră red Coada Răndunicii 3.176
Pamid red Roșioară 2.652
Băbească Neagră red Rara Neagră 2.536
Pinot Noir red - 2.030
Chardonnay white - 2.002
Muscat Blanc / Muscat white Tămâioasă Româneascâ, Tămâioasă Alba 1.742
Pinot Gris white - 1.467
Blaufränkisch red Burgundy Mare 691
Busuioacă de Bohotin white Busuioacă Neagra, Tămâioasă de Bohotin 688
Syrah red - 638
Gewürztraminer / Traminer white Traminer Roz, Rusa 603
Grasă de Cotnari white Grasă, Grasă Mare 546
Riesling white Riesling de Rhin 453
Galbenă de Odobești white - 372
Crâmpoșie white - 366
Rkatsiteli white - 348
Șarbă white - 307
Iordan white Zemoasa 299
Băbească Gris white - 296
Mustoasă de Măderat White - 288
Frâncușă white Frâncușe, Frîncușă 277
Blue Portugieser red Oporto 229
Cabernet Franc red - 146
Plavay white Plâvaie 141
Crâmpoșie Selecționată white - 134
Kadarka red Cadarcâ, Cadarcâ Neagră 79
Neuburger white - 78
Zweigelt red - 76
Novac red - 73
Sangiovese red - 73
Aromat de Iași white - 62
Negru de Drăgășani red - 58
Zghihară de Husi white Sghigardă Galbenă, Zghihară Galbenă 57
Alicante Henri Bouschet red Alicante Bouschet 37
Tempranillo red - 31
Select white - 28
Viognier white - 28
Ezerfürtű white - 27
Furmint white - 26
Alb Aromat white - 25
Codană red - 25
Bătută Neagră red Frâncușă Niagră ?
Bagrina white Braghinâ, Braghină de Drăgășani ?
Chasselas white - ?
Coarnă Neagră red - ?
Hárslevelű white - ?
Kreaca white - ?
Slankamenka white Majarca Alba ?

Wine law & wine categories

In August 2009, the EU wine market regulation came into force with fundamental changes to the wine designations and quality levels. There are the following new designations or quality levels (see Quality System for more information):

IG = Indicație Geografică or Vin de Regiune.

The actual alcohol content must be at least 9.5% (for wine-growing zone B) or 10.0% vol. (wine-growing zones CI and CII). The total alcohol content must not exceed 15% vol. There are about 50 country wine regions, whose names are mostly identical with the political district or region.

DOC = Denumire de Origine Controlată

Quality wines of specified regions with controlled origin. Prescribed quality wine grape varieties. The potential alcohol content must be at least 11.5%, the existing at least 10% vol.

DOCC = Denumire de Origine Controlată si trepte de Calitate.

This corresponds mutatis mutandis to a predicate wine. Minimum must weights are prescribed for each type. The codes refer to the degree of ripeness or the proportion of noble rot grapes; the second "C" refers to "Cules"(grape harvest):

  • CMD (Cules la Maturitate Deplină) = Kabinett (73 Oe or 196 g/l sugar).
  • CT (Cules Târziu) = Late Harvest (82 Oe or 220 g/l sugar).
  • CS (Cules Selectionat) = Auslese (selection)
  • CIB (Cules la Înnobilarea Boabelor) = Beerenauslese (125 Oe or 240 g/l sugar)
  • CSB (Cules la Stafidirea Boabelor) = Trockenbeerenauslese (noble rotten berries, Stafidirea = sultanas)

Special wine designations/types

  • Vin Spumante cu Denumire de Origine Controlată = Sparkling wine with appellation of origin.
  • Rezervă = Reserve (maturation to 6 months in oak barrels and 6 months in bottle).
  • Vin de Vinotecă (ageing to 1 year in oak barrel and 4 months in bottle)
  • Vin Tănăr = young wine (marketing until the end of the harvest year).

Map: © Goruma
Cotnari: By Ulrich prokop - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link
Wine-growing regions: Agroinform
Source 1st paragraph: WIKIPEDIA Romania

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