St. Martins Day celebrations in Slovenia

Published: 28.9.2015

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St. Martins Day celebrations in Slovenia

After the harvest, it`s time for grapes to turn into wine. St Martin`s Day is a celebration dedicated to the new wine, or in other words, a day when must turns into wine.

St. Martins Day celebrations in Slovenia

After the harvest, it`s time for grapes to turn into wine. St Martin`s Day is a celebration dedicated to the new wine, or in other words, a day when must turns into wine. It is celebrated on 11th November in Slovenia, and it is always accompanied by good spirits, pleasant company, and music. You are invited to numerous St. Martin`s Day celebrations across Slovenia: visit Maribor, Ormož, Brda or smaller wine cellars.

Vine has a special significance in Slovenia. It receives attention throughout the year, but its pinnacle is reached on St Martin`s Day on 11th November. It`s the name day of St Martin, a saint who, according to legend, turned water into wine. Today, St Martin`s Day is considered as the day when must turns into wine. It is accompanied by a number of festivities – in celebration of the holiday and the hard work of winegrowers.

The green country boasts 14 wine-growing districts or 3 wine-growing regions: Podravje, Posavje, and Primorska. Their wines differ among each other, depending on the land and the soil, the climate and the effect of the human work. Therefore, the same grape variety bears completely different wines depending on the region where it has matured.

The largest of the region, the Podravje wine-growing region, spreads across the north-east of Slovenia. The wine hills stretch from the Prekmurje hills of Goričko in the north-east, to Gornja Radgona in the north, Ljutomer and Ormož in the east, to Kozjansko and Celje in the south. It is known mainly for white wines with distinctive fruity and floral aromas. The sunny landscape of vineyards and the influence of the Pannonian climate create perfect conditions for the cultivation of Welschriesling or Laški Rizling, which is the most often grown variety here. Blaufränkisch or Modra Frankinja dominates the red wine varieties, and it was first planted due to the desire of the wine lovers. A special place in the Slovenian wine tradition holds Žametovka, produced from the oldest vine in the world which has grown for more than 400 years in Lent in Maribor, Slovenia`s second largest city. Every year, homage is paid to this vine with the traditional Old Vine Festival, which culminates with the largest St. Martin`s Day Celebration in Slovenia. Join the ceremonial christening of must on 11th November, before it turns to wine. Taste the traditional local dishes and treat yourself to a wine-tasting of fine Slovenian wines. Pay a symbolic homage to the abundant harvest in the company of wine queens, members of wine orders and fraternities, rafters, and other visitors. The completion of hard work in the vineyard and a good harvest are celebrated at St Martin`s Day Celebration in Ormož. Meet winegrowers taking part in the competition for the best new wine and the best spritzer, white wine with natural mineral water. Celebrations and accompanying entertainment events take place in the “capital” of Prlekija from 4th to 7th November.

The Posavje wine-growing region extends to the south-east of Slovenia. It is famous for its lighter white and red wines. International grape varieties and local specialities can be found here, as the region is full of small vineyards, cultivated by amateur winegrowers and winemakers. They used to store their tools in vineyard cottages, wooden or stone houses at the edge of a vineyard, but today you can spend the night there. With regard to the Posavje wine-growing region, Cviček should be mentioned, which is the only wine in the world besides the Tuscan Chianti made out of red and white grape varieties. Protected with the mark of recognized traditional denomination, it consists of 70 percent of Žametovka and Blaufränkisch (Modra Frankinja) and 30 percent of Kraljevina and Welschriesling (Laški Rizling). St Martin`s Day Celebration in Dolenjska region is as unique as the ingredients of Cviček. Meet Novo mesto and its 650-year-old history. Take a ride on Rudolf`s raft down the Krka river in the company of the Princess of Cviček. Celebrate with the locals and toast with the best Cviček of the season.

As the Slovenian name suggests, the Primorska wine-growing region touches the sea. Sun has special power here, which is reflected in the autochthonous varieties and fine wines. Most famous Slovenian red wines found their home in the Primorska region. The indigenous red wine Teran is held in particularly high regard. The karst soil and wind give the wine its distinctive flavour and colour. Among the special wines, Zelen white wine from the Vipavska dolina valley and Ribolla or Rebula from the Brda hills stand out. The largest St Martin`s Day Celebration in Brda in Šmartno attracts connoisseurs and wine-tasters and lovers of autumn Brda delicacies. Join them at wine-tastings in the cellars of the abandoned houses. Welcome to the celebration of the most important wine holiday in Slovenia!

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