I was amazed how well the croats spoke other languages. Their preferred language by far is italien, then german and english. Many of them speak more than one foreign language, and you can watch people working with tourists switching from italien to german to england. I think its so cool to be able to speak so many languages.
they use lots of italien slang and I sometimes had problems understanding them.
an example : gasbottle for camping = bombalo
Istria has been a wine-growing region even before Christ!
A Roman Stone Monument from the year 75 (Stela) with a relief of a grape gatherer tells us about that tradition.
By the end of the 19th Century an agricultural Institute with a wine callar was founded.
Wine and "rakija" made of grape draff (so-called wine brandy) are the LOCAL ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES.
Among the white wines, the native Istrian malvazija, White and Grey Pinot, Sauvignon and Chardonay stand out.
Among the red wines there is Borgonja, Merlot, Refosk, Cabernet and Ruzicasta Hrvatica.
Among the dessert wines, Slatka Malvazija and Muskat (red and white) are popular.
Recently a greater selection of local quality champagne is offered.
Very often aromatic herbs and all kinds of fruits are added to the grape brandy, like: rue which is the most popular brandy!
Enjoy it all.........
Typical Istrian dishes are made of fruits of the land and the sea.
The so-called "Manestres"-broth made of all kinds of vegetables and dried meat is very famous.
Zgvacet is a sauce made of chicken, beef and venison served with all kinds of Pasta - Fuzi, njoki, posutice, lasagne.
Porc, prepared with various spices and dried in the open air is very highly praised - prsut (smoked ham), ombolo (porc filets), sausages which can be eaten raw or grilled.
Istrian cheese made of cheep's milk is vary good too!
At some restaurants meat and potatoes are baked in the fire place under an iron pan used for baking bread.
The Istrian shore is very rich in fish and other fruits of the sea!
Fresh fish of high quality is served boiled, baked or fried.
The most delicious fish is the local fish:
Shellfish such as oysters (kamenice) are eaten raw with a touch of lemon juice, date-shells (prstaci, datule) and mussels (pedoci, dagnje) are prepared with a sauce (buzara).
Squid are mostly eaten fried or grilled.
Very highly ratyed is sea spider and black fish salad, scampi in a sauce (buzara) or grilled, risotto or lasagna with fruits of the sea, black risotto with cuttle fish and cod fish "on white".
THERE ARE LOTS OF COFFEE SHOPS IN POREC, TAR AND AT THE MANY TOURIST COMPLEXES!
Many of them are beautifully decorated and have attractive summer terraces.
Espresso, cappuccino, various soft drinks and alcoholic beverages, sandwiches and pastries are served!
Along with good music and a cosy atmosphere they are perfect places for gathering or just getting away for a while from the summer heat!
Ever seen the very young grapes in huge bunches hanging on the lavishly green vines, contrasting so wonderfully with that special RED SOIL , not yet thinned-out??
There are several WINE CELLARS and taprooms: here follow a few addresses, then it is up to you which one to choose, where to go ........
And believe me, many of you always talk about beer but they probably never ever tasted the SLOVENE WINE, it is SUPERB.....
Perhaps you will get an opportunity as we had, to taste HOME MADE WINE....
But the addresses:
tel. 431 921
THE BASEMENT OF THE AGRICULTURAL SCHOOL
Karla Huguesa 6
Mate Vlasica 29
tel. 432 527
Brochures of wines roads and wine cellars inland of Porestina and Istria are available at reception and at the Tourist Information Center (TIC Zagrebacka 8 tel. 451 293)
A drink I first discovered in 1981, it's a little like sangria - red wine and fruit juice - with spirts added to give it a little oooomph. Never seem to get two the same, I think whichever bottle is almost empty is the spirit you get. Anyway Mrs Bonio certainly enjoyed several.......
LATEST BUS SCHEDULES and RATES:
to Pula: 1.5hr, 29KN 6.25, 6.35, 7.35, 9.00, 9.45, 11.30, 15.10, 16.00, 16.20, 18.40, 22.50.
to Rijecka: 3.5hr, 42KN 7.30, 8.15, 10.30, 12.25, 14.15, 17.00, 18.15, 20.45, 21.45.
to Rovinj: 30mins, 15KN 5.25, 7.35, 9.00, 15.10, 15.55, 16.20, 22.50
to Zagreb: 6.5hrs, 112KN 8.15, 9.15, 15.10, 17.00, 20.00, 20.45, 21.45
to Portoroz: 2hrs, 35KN 9.00, 10.05.
to Ljubljana: 5hrs, 83KN 9.00
The closest train station is n Kanfanar, which is about 30- 45 min. of a drive
Waiters in Istra do not expect tips at all. Prices are high already for the standard of living in Croatia and they know it. But also don't expect big gratefulness from them if you do leave them some. Of course here really applies the rule, if you are happy with the service, food, atmosphere leave tip, otherwise forget about it.
There is an office for information right next to the parking lot, along with the WC for your pleasure. There are indications that the information center is on Zagrebacka, but we did not see it there.