10 Dec Turkey’s Primary Indigenous Grape Production by Region

Turkey is known to have between 1,200 and 1,500 named grape varietals growing across all of its regions of which around 30 of them (both indigenous and international) produce outstanding wines.

Let’s briefly explore the main & prized indigenous varietals of Turkey and where they are primarily cultivated across Turkey’s 4 main wine regions.

In a later post, we’ll explore each of these indigenous varietals in-depth and also separately examine the plantings of international varietals across the 4 regions.

(all figures quotes below are 2013)

Emir

The total production of this white native grape was around 5,500 tons. The major planting is in Mid- Southern Anatolia region where it is the native grape of Cappadocia. It acquired its name (Emir as in “Ruler” or, “Lord”) since it was a popular wine at the local lords’ tables and it was used since the Roman times to make crisp, refreshing wines.

Narince

Another primary white varietal, the total production of Narince in Turkey was around 6,150 tons. The major planting is in the Mid-Eastern Anatolia region, notably in Tokat. Narince means “delicately” in Turkish.

Sultaniye

The total production of Sultaniye, another white grape, in Turkey was around 14,000 tons.The major planting is in the Aegean region grown mainly in Denizli and Manisa. It is mostly consumed as table grapes and raisins though it is also used in wine making.

Bornova Misketi

The total production of Bornova Misketi was around 910 tons with major planting in the Aegean city of İzmir. Bornova Misketi is considered th Muscat of Turkey as it displays the nose & palate of Muscat.

Kalecik Karası

Major plantings of this prized red grape varietal are in the Aegean, Mid-Northern and Mid-Southern Anatolia region with total production of around 6,885 tons. Kalecik Karası means the “black from the small castle”. Kalecik is a small village (65 km north-east of Ankara) in Central Anatolia with a castle.

Öküzgözü

Native to Eastern Anatolia (Elazig), Öküzgözü, another prized red varietal, derives its name from the fact that it has large, black berries that resemble a bull’s eye. Total production was around 11,830 tons. Major plantings are in Mid-Eastern Anatolia and the Aegean regions.

Boğazkere

Boğazkere means “throat burner” and this red varietal had total production of around 8,850 tons with major plantings in South East Anatolia.

Çalkarası

Another Aegean grape, the Çalkarası is native to Denizli and makes lively rosé wines as well as light, fruity reds. Total production of Çalkarası in Turkey was around 5,000 tons and is planted in the Aegean region.

Data & original image: Wines of Turkey