Ljubljana may be the capital of Slovenia, but when it comes to St Martin’s Day celebrations (Martinovanje) the first city is Maribor. This claims to have “the biggest public one-day celebration” of the hour when the year’s new wine if officially launched. It also comes a short time after the weeks-long Old Vine Festival in Maribor, nominally focused on the oldest vine in the world that still produces grapes, but in reality a celebration of all things food, wine and Slovene.
As the video above shows, the city it thus ready, willing and able to get into the festive spirit, with some 20,000 people expected to take part in a day that brings the producers and consumers of wine together, and much more to do than just drink a glass or two. There will be a “celebration of autumn” procession, with wine queens and others, wending its way around the city centre. There will be a ceremony when must – the immature wine – is blessed and becomes the focal drink. There will be food to sample along with the wine, from local farms and restaurants. And there will, of course, be music and dancing.
The whole thing kicks off at 11:11 (not a typo, for once) on Monday 11 November, with the organised events set to run until 21:00. All the events are centred at Trg Leona Štuklja, while the Old Vine House (Stara trta) should also see some action, and that can be found not far away, at Vojašniška ulica 8. If going to a wine event on a Monday is not possible, then consider a visit to the smaller – but still very grand – Ljubljana Wine Route, which takes place this Saturday, 9 November (2019), as detailed here.