Saint Martin’s vintage arrives in Prague
In recent years, Saint Martin’s day has become a welcome opportunity for Czech winemakers to present their young wines. The revived tradition of Saint Martin’s wines has caught on, and November 11 has become a fixture in the calendar of Czech wine-lovers. One of the main wine festivals in the capital is held on Jiřího z Poděbrad Square, in the Vinohrady neighbourhood.
“I’m from a little family winery, called Vinařství Kubík, from Velké Bílovice. On this occasion we are presenting mainly Saint Martin’s wine, which is inspired by the French tradition of Beaujolais Nouveau. But we also have samples of our regular produce, mainly late harvest and selection of grapes.
Is this your first time here?
“Yes. We joke it’s our zero anniversary because this is our first time here.”
The tradition of Saint Martin’s vintage, popular before the war, has been revived by the Czech winemakers’ association to promote their produce, and provide opportunities for smaller producers to present their wines to the public. Ladislav Mrkva is from the Roseta winery in a small village of Radějov, on the Slovak border.
The Saint Martin’s wine market in Vinohrady also offers the typical Saint Martin’s dish – roast goose with cabbage and dumplings, and other foods like hams, cheeses, and so on. Despite the time of day –a work day at that – the event attracted hundreds of people, moving from stall to stall with wine glasses. 67-year-old Lubomír Zemánek, who says he has Moravian roots, is a regular visitor to the event.
“It shows what this year’s harvest has been, what the wines will be like. If you are really interested, you probably already know, but it’s always nice to taste them right here, in this environment.”
The market also draws foreign visitors to Prague, curious about the Saint Martin feast as well as the area. Klaus Bohr and his wife came form Denmark.
For more information about Czech Saint Martin’s Wines and where to find them go to www.svatomartinskevino.cz.