Croatia and particularly the Dalmatian region offers a great number of festivals including Love international, Electric elephant, Suncebeat, Movement, Soundwave, Ultra Europe, Moondance, Obonjan and Deboto. From the 18th –20th August 2016, in the medieval city of Šibenik, festival-goers will be treated to the full Deboto experience which stretches far beyond your traditional festival offering. We caught up with one of the organisers Franck Alfier to find out a bit more about this new festival.
Where did the concept for the festival stem from?
It all started when our partner Eddy Ramich, accredited as the heart and soul behind Croatian club culture, developed this idea of creating a new festival where music, venues, food and wine would all be at the same level. A festival for "bons vivants".
How would you describe the mission of Deboto?
We want to provide a stress free experience where people take time to enjoy everything Sibenik and its area have to offer. Encourage them to discover the local food and wine scene. The Sibenik region has a great "terroir" and there is a real culture centred around food and wine here, a love for food cooked simply and beautifully. Our mission is to get more people to discover it, the music being the bonus.
Careful consideration has gone into the programming but what makes you different from other festivals?
It’s never going to be about quantity, the focus will always be on the quality. Deboto is a human size festival. We are not trying to create another music festival extravaganza. We want to be in tune with the sophisticated and relaxed pace of Sibenik. Chefs and winemakers invited to the festival are for us as important as the artists performing. They are also artists in their own right. We want a true music, food and wine celebration.
At what point did you know you had the perfect location?
Mouth-watering cuisine, delicious wine, breathtaking nature and sparkling sea, Šibenik has it all, a little gem situated along the mouth of Krka on the most picturesque part of the eastern Adriatic coast. Sibenik also boasts four different fortresses (St Michael's fortress is our main stage). An ambitious programme of restoration has already begun to return the fortresses to the heart of Šibenik life, confirming the city’s position as one of the fastest-rising cultural destinations on the Adriatic. Our plan is to use all those fortresses one day!
Our favourites restaurants and bars in and around Šibenik...
Cuisine built on a combination of tradition and innovation with a strong foundation in locally grown ingredients. Voted best Croatian restaurant in 2015 and best Dalmatian restaurant for many years now, this place will take you on a journey of tastes you will never forget. The restaurant is located in a historical palace, along with a staircase-turned terrace overlooking St. James Cathedral and an intimate rear courtyard. You’d best make a reservation to snag a table with a view.
This place will show you the best of home cooking with a bit of twist every time you visit. Favourite casual lunch or dinner location for both locals and tourists. Make sure to ask for a recommendation for the day, they will not disappoint you.
3/ MARENDA 2
The name comes from a local word for a midday snack squeezed in between breakfast and lunch. They cook traditional food only - just a couple of dishes every day, and if you visit once, they will know you forever. If you are a pork eater do not miss a chance to order "oglavina" - legendary Šibenik marenda dish of thoroughly cooked pig head.
Wine bar serving local wines, some craft cocktails and a variety of cold snacks. 70% of the wine list is from Šibenik county area, all beer is local and they will tell you all about any of the menu items. You will not miss this spot since it is right next to one of Deboto stages.
5/ Konoba Vidrovača
Hidden little restaurant which can only be accessed by boat (it's possible to arrange a 5min taxi boat from Skradin). There you'll think you've just found your own little piece of paradise. With a variety of fish and shellfish from Skradin and Sibenik sea archipelago and also succulent meat specialties, you'll wish you could stay there forever.
And our list of the best wines from the Šibenik area to try:
Start with some sparkling bubbles made from a local debit grape - Bibich Brut is your best summer night friend if you consider yourself "bubbles aficionado" Moving on to its non-sparkling cousin a fresh 2015 Bibich Debit which is fermented in low temperature conditions that bring out the minerals and acids that will excite you with every sip.
Continue with a rose made from the local babić grape. Birin Rose to taste the rich soils of nearby hinterland vineyards and then switch to reds, beginning with a light but complex OPG Sladić Cuvee. It combines the fragile lasin (the long lost cousin of pinot noir) and quirky plavina - both local grapes as well. Finish your journey with Gracin Babić - an aged wine that comes from an UNESCO protected position in which rocky ground, heavy sun, constant winds and sea vicinity work their magic.
More information can be found HERE.