Winemaking is a tradition that goes back thousands years in Romania. At various times in the past, up to 200,000 hectares of land in the region have been devoted to grape-growing. Today, pioneering young vintners in places like the Târnava valley of Transylvania are trying to revive that tradition.
European Union membership has been a boon for Romanian vintners. It’s opened new markets and brought capital into the area. But local winemakers still face many obstacles, among them local bureaucrats, who often demand bribes in exchange for approving export licenses and awarding EU support and subsidies.