What do you need to produce a bottle of wine and bring it onto the market? The bare essentials are grapes, some yeast, fermentation vessels, and some bottles to put it in. Dimitri Brečević reckoned he had it all covered, when just weeks away from releasing his first vintage, it dawned on him that there was a problem: he had no labels and no branding.
A few phone calls later, and he’d tracked down one Sean Poropat, a designer based in Poreč, near his home village Buzet (Istria, Croatia). Sean took just one week to come up with a range of design options, from which the distinctive “Piquentum” branding was selected.
Although Brečević was raised in France, his father hailed from Istria (The Northerly part of Croatia butting up to Slovenia). Following a winemaking apprenticeship that took him from South-West France to Australia and New Zealand, Dimitri was keen to return to his fatherland and apply his winemaking knowledge back in Croatia. In 2006, the opportunity to purchase a disused army bunker near the village of Buzet presented Brečević with the chance he needed. Perfectly situated in the midst of vineyards, the bunker was also naturally cool – a real boon for winemaking. The only challenge was seeking planning permission to convert the ex-military facility into a winery – its existence had been so secret that the planning department initially denied that there was any building there at all! Continue reading