On Saturday, May 11, the second cheese and wine festival took place in Valpovo. The festival venue, as last year, was Valpovo’s medieval-baroque complex of the Prandau-Normann castle. There are a number of events dedicated to wine being held, but this event is unique because it puts the emphasis on both the wine and the cheese, as well as on how to pair the two. Some of the best wine and cheese producers from Slavonia, Baranja and Srijem took part.
With the exception of the Podolski winery from Križevci, all the other wineries were from the Danube region, and it can be said that the Danube is the link which connects them all. Although it is not perceived as such by the public, Valpovo could be said to be located in the Danube region. Namely, the only suburb of Valpovo situated on the Drava river is located 42 kilometres from the point when the Drava meets the Danube River.
The Baranja wine area was presented by wineries Gerštmajer, Josić, Kolar, Kalazić, Svijetli Dvori, Szabo and Zajec. The Gerštmajer winery was represented by Ivan Gerštamjer Zelember, the fifth generation of the Gerštmajer wine dynasty from Baranja. Their wines are already well-known to everyone; for most connoisseurs, they represent the essence of traditional, original Baranja wine-making.
The other winemakers from the Baranja area were represented by the head of the Baranya Julia wine shop from Zmajevac, Gabriella Gerštmajer, who is also the vice-president of the Surduk association, organiser of legendary events in Zmajevac such as the Wine Marathon.
The Josić winery also comes from the Baranja wine capital Zmajevac. In addition to their wines, also highly acclaimed is the Josić winery’s restaurant, where their wines are served and paired with Baranja delicacies. Recently they decided to rebrand the visual identity of their wines, but the quality has remained at an exceptional level.
The Kolar winery comes from Suza, a town connected to Zmajevac and through which you must pass if you are coming to the wine capital from the direction of Kneževi Vinogradi. The Kalazić winery is on the road that runs from Zmajevac to Batina. Svijetli Dvori and Szabo wineries can be found in the Karanac ethno-village. All Baranja wineries presented at the festival came from the Kneževi Vinogradi municipality, which is just one of nine local self-government units in Baranja.
The Erdut wine area is located to the southeast of Baranja. This area geographically belongs to Slavonia, and it was represented by wineries Danubio, Iuris, Magistra and Siber. The Ilok wine area was represented by the Buhač, Papak and TRS wineries.
The cheese producers who came to the festival were family farms Geto from Lug, Glavaš from Bizovac, Gašić from Beketinci, Đurković from Marjančaci, Lehki from Gat, Pranjić from Drenovci and Mala Mljekara from Valpovo.
The Golubov family farm from Draž presented its elderberry juice, while family farms Brkić and Kraljik showed their cured meat products. The Horvat family farm from Duboševica prepared homemade pasta with poppy seeds and walnuts.
The highlight of the festival was the pairing of cheeses and wines, led by Tomica Đukić, the chef of the Osijek Hotel restaurant and the chief cook of the Croatian national football team.
More wine news can be found in the Lifestyle section.