– Gönc family has been involved in winegrowing and wine production for four generations. In a nutshell, what is a story of Gönc winery? What is a little extra that sets you apart from other Slovenian winemakers?
The vines were laid in our cradle four generations ago when my grandfather planted the first vineyard and decided the family’s fate. From generation to generation, we have expanded our winery and increased the production of wine-making. Our focus is still on traditional, autochthonic varieties, but we are also playing with wine grape types that are not typical for the region. Therefore our wines differ slightly from those typical for the Styria region because we focus primarily on red and mature white wines. We want to show that there is plenty of room for the development of winemaking, to differentiate yourself and step outside of traditional frames.
– Traditionally wine turns into wine on St. Martin’s Day. What can we expect from your winery? What can you say regarding this year’s harvest?
This year, the weather was quite turbulent and stressful for all Slovene winegrowers. At first frost, then the hail that hit several times both had an impact on vines. The crop is smaller, but at the end, we expect an above-average year and wines of 2017 are very rich and aromatic.
-Winemaking is one of those romantic-sounding careers that you dream about as you’re happily sipping on a big glass of wine after a long day at your desk job. Is it a dream job? What is the most challenging part of the wine business? The most rewarding?
If you could at one time dress the winemaker in all the clothes he wears during working hours, he would look very colorful. On one leg he would wear a working rubber boot, on another stylish shoe, work pants, stylish shirt over it and a thermal sweater on the top. In one hand, scissors in the second bottle opener, on the head headlamp and a smile on the face. The work of the vine grower and winemaker is very diverse, covering a wide range of work from vineyards to social events and marketing. Pleasant and innovative work of developing wine also includes many sleepless nights at the time of harvest, stressful days when the wine is in the wine cellar and also numerous absences from home and family due to promotion and sale in Slovenia and abroad.
-In December, we choose you for the winemaker of the month and guests in our hotel restaurant will be able to try your wines for lunch or dinner for a whole month. Any suggestion or hint from your side on how to choose the right wine for the right dishes?
When choosing a wine to a specific dish, I personally stick to “keep it simple” principle. Of course, there are basic guidelines, but why not experiment with the selection and be pleasantly surprised – sometimes the combination of food and wine is most fortunate when we try something new and unexpected.
– The design of your wine bottles is a bit special. Can you say that in addition to bottle contents, the outer appearance of the bottle is also important?
It is not only the character of the wine that expresses the winemaker, but also the label. The story of four generations with the addition of boldness is combined in the labels of our wine bottles. Above all, we wanted the bottle itself to be perfectly designed.
Foto: Gönc Winery