Levi Dalton speaks with three Ukrainians about the struggles faced by winemakers and winery owners amongst the warfare in Ukraine.
Alla Plachkova discusses fleeing Kyiv as bombs begin to fall on the city in 2022. She talks about rescuing her mother and fleeing south inside Ukraine as warfare stretches across the country. She shares the fears she felt as a mother trying to protect her children, and the terror she felt as bombs fell and planes roared over her home. Alla talks as well about her family's decision to open their home to refugees fleeing the war.
Alla talks about the roots of her husband's family, and his founding of a winery near Odessa. She talks about the success her husband found with Odessa Black, a grape variety specifically associated with Ukraine. She also touches on the success the winery has had in bringing tourists to the region it was founded in. She finishes with a strong statement of ideals about the freedom of the Ukrainian people.
Sergiy Klimov covers the recent development of Ukrainian wines since the early 2000s, as well as the ancient roots of winemaking in the country stretching back thousands of years. He describes a history where winemaking has at times flourished in the area, while it has been restricted or suppressed at other times. He also touches on the different winemaking regions of Ukraine today. Sergiy describes what it is like to sell Ukrainian wines to people who have never had it before, and gives a rationale for the recent rapid quality development for winemaking in the country.
Anna Gorkun talks about the difficulties faced by a wine business in Ukraine today, and about adjusting business strategies to cope with a country that has seen waves of turmoil from warfare and the pandemic. She also talks about what her own business is trying to achieve. Anna further gives her assessment of Ukraine's shift towards the west, and of Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine's President.
This episode features commentary from:
Alla Plachkova, Kolonist Wines
Sergiy Klimov, the author of "The Untold Story of Ukrainian Wine"
Anna Gorkun, 46 Parallel Wine Group
NOTE: This episode contains discussions that may be disturbing for children. Parental discretion is advised.