Orange wine from the traditional Bulgarian variety Dimyat – what is it?

Orange Wine Barrel Fermented 2016 – Maryan Winery

In summer 2017, during a trip to the Balkan mountains near the town of Elena, we made one of our most interesting discoveries. And now, in the cold autumn, we are still enjoying it. It’s the Maryan Winery – a boutique family-owned wine cellar in Northeastern Bulgaria which focuses on making wines from indigenous Bulgarian grape varieties, most notably Dimyat grape. One of our favourites from their portfolio is Orange Wine Barrel Fermented 2016. It is not made of oranges, though. This wine is produced from white grapes by traditional technology, fermenting with the seeds and peels for 4 months. Maryan Winery makes orange wine from the traditional Bulgarian variety Dimyat and the result is impressive.

About Maryan winery

If you are near the town of Elena, I strongly recommend you to visit also the small village Maryan and Maryan winery. It is run by the family of Svetla, Ilia and Petar Ivanov and their friend and winemaker Stefan Choranov. Here you can taste quality wines from traditional Bulgarian varieties and also some world-known varieties.


What to expect from the Orange wine from Dimyat grape

The amber-coloured wine stole our hearts from the first sip. However, we were curious to learn the story behind it and its real potential.

The first thing to notice is the specific aroma of this special wine – so interesting, attractive and unusual. We smelled herbs, black pepper, some yellow fruits and maybe a light scent of apricot. Rich of tastes and pleasantly spicy – the black pepper is really there. Full body and an elegant finish.

The orange wine of Maryan winery is a wine to remember. No matter whether it fits your taste, there is no way you forget it. And my advise is not to miss tasting it if you have this opportunity. It is usually served cooled.

Dimyat grape variety  – one of the oldest Bulgarian varieties

Dimyat grape variety was among the most popular white varieties grown in Bulgaria for decades. It is mostly grown in Eastern Bulgaria, along the Black sea coast, but also in the Thracian valley in the region of Stara Zagora. Maryan’s Dimyat grape is grown around Nova Zagora, Southeastern Bulgaria.

Dimyat is a late-maturing variety and it matures around the end of September. It is known for its high acidity.

Many winemakers in Bulgaria are skeptical about the Dimyat variety and rarely produce pure Dimyat wine. It is widely thought that the wines from Dimyat are plain table wines without a lot of potential. Dimyat is most often added to blends. However, from Dimyat are produced some of the best cognac distillates.

But our experience with Maryan winery proves that Dimyat can make wonderful and interesting wines and it all depends on the technology process.

What else to try from Dimyat

Maryan winery offers probably the largest portflio of Dimyat wines in Bulgaria. There you can find both oaked and non-oaked Dimyat wine and to see how amazing the difference could be. Their first series of Dimyat wine was produced in 2013 and we recently tasted it – still wonderful.

DiVinoTaste_2017 - Maryan
Maryan winery stand during the wine festival Divino.Taste 2017

Another interesting Dimyat wine was the blend with chardonnay and sauvignon blanc.

Earlier we tasted also Orange wine from Dimyat, 2015, which was non-filtered and also amazing. I think it is out of stock now.

The legend of Kera Tamara and Dimyat

We love legends and fairytales and it is always great to hear one among the facts. The present legends is about Kera Tamara, the beautiful sister of Bulgarian ruler Tzar Ivan Shishman. The legend says that Kera Tamara was married to the Ottoman sultan Murad in order to preserve the peace between the two states. However, while saying Goodbye to her motherland, her tears in the ground turned into vines producing the wonderful Dimyat grapes.


We adore wine and it is not only a part of our travels but also reason for them. Read more about the wines that have impressed us or for our favourite wine cellars.

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