The first wine of the season, the so-called Saint Martin’s wine, goes on
sale on Saturday in the Czech Republic. Czechs are celebrating the Feast of
Saint Martin, which falls on November 11 and which has become an occasion
for winemakers to present their young wines.
Events featuring wine tasting are traditionally held at various venues around the country. This year, the main event takes place on Freedom Square in Bnro. In Prague, festivities will be traditionally held in Náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad and the Rašínovo nábřeží embankment. This year, sellers expect around 2.2 million bottles of Saint Martin’s to go on the market, which is a slight drop on the previous year.
A two-day traditional “vinobraní” wine harvest festival began at
Prague’s Naměstí Míru on Friday, as astronomical summer ended. The
harvest has been celebrated at this site for 11 years.
At vinobraní events, visitors are able to taste various samples including burčák (young wine).
The festival at Naměstí Míru is themed according to the First Republic this year; an accompanying concert by Aneta Langerová will take place at Gröbovka Park.
The grape harvest in the Czech Republic this year should exceed that of
2016 growers say as the harvest begins to be taken in.
Growers expect grapes sufficient for around 580,000 hectolitres of grapes for wine to be brought in this Autumn, that’s around 15,000 hectolitres more than 2016.
Severe frost earlier in the year fuelled worries that the crop this year would be a poor one. The harvest is concentrated mostly in the South Moravian region.
Czechs are doing their bit to support economic and political development in the small and relatively poor Republic of Moldova, sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine. The Czech Republic is already among Moldova’s top 10 European Union trade partners and is supporting the country with development aid for targeted areas. But the Moldovans would like to deepen relations much further.
Czech wine growers say freezing weather at the end of April will cost them around half a billion crowns. A national association of vintners said on Tuesday that the price of grapes was likely to rise this year due to a projected shortage. Of the country’s wine growing areas, Velkopavlovická was hardest hit last month, sustaining a likely 20 percent fall in output. By contrast Znojmo suffered practically zero damage.
In recent years, Prague has been attracting more and more visitors who are interested specifically in the local cuisine and beverages. Besides regular food tours there are also special one-off events, such as the Natural Born Butchers’ wine tasting party inspired by the pig slaughter season, combining mostly Bohemian and Moravian wines and specialties made from a traditional Czech breed of pig.
Thousands of people gathered on Freedom Square in Brno on Friday to attend the opening of this year’s first bottles of Saint Martin’s wine. The day of Saint Martin, which is celebrated in the country on November 11, has become an occasion for winemakers to present their young wines. Events are taking place all around the country. In Prague the main festivities will be held in Náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad. Over two million bottles of Saint Martin’s wine will be available on the market this year.
November 11th, or St. Martin’s Day, has always been associated with the first snow reflected in the popular saying “St. Martin arrives on a white horse”. In recent years the day has come to be known for something else altogether: young wine from the year’s harvest goes on sale in shops and at open air markets around the country to light up the autumn gloom with some summer sun.