A caron of refreshment

Črnko Jareninčan, Štoka Teran rose and Martinčič Cviček will be available shortly after their May 25th arrival at port. They’re all from the idyllic 2015 vintage and none are over 12.5% abv. Spread across Slovenia, the three wineries Črnko, Štoka, and Martinčič form a triangle and moreover, speaking of triangles, that two sided triangle above all these threatening words is a caron. It adds an “h” to the pronunciation of the letter it crowns. “CHrnko, SHtoka, MartinCHiCH”… Get it? Amazing it took us so long to share that!

slovenia_caron_map

2015 Martinčič Cviček: The name Cviček (Zvee-Check) is evidently old Slovenian for “very sour wine”. A bracingly dry blend of native red and white varieties that cannot exceed 10% abv. nor be diluted or dealcoholized. Cviček comes from Lower Carniola in Southern Slovenia, another of the country’s picturesque green hillscapes and tastes of the surrounding forest and sour cherry. Barely red and void of tannin, it should be chilled and gulped. In addition to a vine nursery, Jernej Martinčič conscientiously farms 8 hectares over 7 sites of mixed marls and limestones. Fermented with native yeast in stainless steel and wood tanks before blending and bottled just after malolactic fermentation which moderates the ferocity of acid. Traditionally, it is a Summer BBQ wine. The fresher the better.

Jernej Martincic
Jernej Martinčič

2015 Črnko Jareninčan: Not far from Austria’s Styria in the same seemingly infinite hills of marl, the Črnko family farms 6 hectares spread between the 2 quad burningly steep hill sides. Jareninčan, named for the nearby village of Jarenina, is based around a mixed vineyard, winemaker Silvo Črnko’s father planted in the 60’s. Composed of Muller Thurgau, Sauvignon Blanc, Muscat, and much more, following the exact composition is unnecessary; Jareninčan tastes of the hills it comes from. Pure mineral refreshment. The family keeps costs down by doing everything, even harvest (with the help of some thirsty friends) themselves. Filtered pre-fermentation and inoculated, but so what? Peachy, discreetly floral, even resinous with the freshness of a mountain brook and zero trapped Co2 despite the adorable crown cap closure.

Silvo Crnko
Silvo Crnko

2015 Štoka Teran Rose: The heavy weight of the trio clocks in at a whopping 12.3%. In 2014 it was 11.9%, so 2015 is a ripe one. Unlike the ocean of innocuous “pink stuff” that taste the same regardless of grape or origin, Štoka Teran rose is an original. Their 7 hectares of mainly Teran (a refosco relative, though way cooler) are planted in the ferrous rich Terra Rosa that give the aromatic, complex, sanguine reds the Kras is famous for. Štoka red Teran is a feather weight bomb. Fruitful, Amaro-esque on the nose, light footed yet deep, with a never ending zip that belies its sticky scents. This all comes through in the rose though in a gentler juicier form. Pressed and fermented with native yeast without maceration, it is shiny salmon in color and best enjoyed with local salt cured pršut (ham) of the same hue.

Primoz Stoka
Primoz Štoka pruning