The members of the ZFM Jury had the opportunity to discover the pearl of the city of Cricova to know its history through the screening of the documentary film in Cinema Cricova, but also to taste selected wines.
Cricova cellars are truly unequalable in the world. Here the history, archeology and the art of winemaking joined their forces and formed a genuine underground town. Nowadays, the wine town occupies an area of 53 hectares, and the underground galleries, transformed into streets, have a total length of 120 kilometers. The labyrinths are located at a depth reaching 80 meters in some places, depending on the relief. Like in a real town, there are streets, traffic lights and road signs. It is just that the paths of the labyrinth have rather unusual names like “Cabernet”, “Dionis”, “Feteasca”, “Aligote”, “Sauvignon”, so that every street matches the name of the wine that is stored in the adjacent niches. The temperature in the underground galleries remains constant all year round, making up appr. + 12 … + 14°C, while the relative humidity of the air is around 97-98%. These natural conditions enable the preservation and ageing of wines of the highest quality, as well as of the classic sparkling wine, and the formation of their authentic character.
In fact, the renowned cellars have emerged as a result of stone extraction in these places, thus the cellars used to be stone mines. Many buildings in Cricova, Chisinau, Balti and other towns in Moldova have been built from the limestone extracted here. Limestone is still being extracted in some ramifications of the galleries, thus the underground town keeps growing!