The first vines were planted in this area by the Celts some 2,400 years ago. The Romans influenced the viticulture especially in the area of Poetovium (Ptuj = Pettau). The Roman wine author Pliny the Elder (23-79) mentioned viticulture in the karst area and called these wines an elixir of life. During the migration of the peoples, viticulture came to a standstill again. But in the Middle Ages the wines were highly valued at the courts of Imperial Vienna and Archbishop Salzburg. The Austrian Archduke Johann (1782-1859) owned a model vineyard near Maribor (Marburg). Even today the influences of the historical and long affiliation to Austria-Hungary can be felt. As in most European countries, large areas of vineyards fell victim to phylloxera in the second half of the 19th century.
Wine growing areas / climate
installation areas are located in the north on the border with Austria (southern Styria), in the east on the border with Hungary and in the west on the border with the Italian region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia. Around three-quarters of the production is white wines, around a quarter red wines. Slovenian viticulture has shown rapid positive development. The Movia winery is a model company and pioneer. There are many small winegrowers with tiny areas. The climatic conditions are characterized by Alpine, continental and Mediterranean climate. After short, heavy rain showers in spring, a warm summer follows and a long, mostly sunny autumn, which allows for a late harvest and thus also ripe predicate wines. Slovenia is divided into three major wine-growing regions with 14 wine-growing areas of protected origin. In 2012, the vineyards covered a total of 16,000 hectares, of which 507,000 hectolitres of wine were produced (see also under Wine production volumes):
Podravje (Drauland) divided into two areas with 9,650 ha:
1. Stajerska Slovenija (Slovenian Styria) with 8,685 ha
As in Austria and Germany, these are based on the must weight of the grapes. The label must indicate the total quantity of bottles produced or their number of litres. The degrees of sweetness are suho (dry), polsuho (semi-dry), polsladko (semi-sweet) and sladko (sweet). In August 2009, the EU wine market regulation came into force with fundamental changes in wine designations and quality grades. There are the following new designations or quality grades (see also under quality system):
PTP = Priznano Tradicionalno Poimenovanje or traditional wine
PGO (Priznano Geografsko Oznaka = recognised geographical indication):
Wine from fully ripe grapes, natural alcoholic strength by volume 8.5%, maximum yield 120 h/ha, sensory and analytical examination required.
ZGP (Zaščitenim Geografskim Poreklom = protected geographical origin):
Use of quality wine grape varieties and certain vineyards are obligatory, fully ripe grapes, natural alcohol content zum. 8.5% vol (9.5% vol in wine-growing zone CII), maximum yield 80 hl/ha, sensory and analytical testing required, at official tasting must be achieved zum. 16.1 of 20 points.
VV z ZGP (Vrhunsko Vino z Zaščitenim Geografskim Poreklom = top wine gesch. geogr. Herk:)
This corresponds analogously to a predicate wine. The following conditions apply in addition to the basic criteria: No Weinleseenrichment and additives allowed, no deacidification. At least 18.1 of 20 points must be achieved at official tasting. Additional denominations/wine types listed:
Ledeno Vino = ice wine (naturally frozen at harvest, at 128 °Oe)
Slamno Vino (Vino iz Sušenega Grozdja) = straw wine (dried on reed mats)
PTP (Priznano Tradicionalno Poimenovanje = recognised traditional term):
Wines produced according to traditional methods with protection of geographical origin. There are only four of them; these are Belokranjec, Cviček, Kras Teran and Metliska Crnina.
Specific wine descriptions/types
Arhivsko Vino = archive wine (matured 2 years in barrels and 2 bottles; zum. 83 °Oe)
Mlado Vino = young wine (marketed 30 days after harvest until 31st January of the following year)