On the feast of St. Vincent (in Croatian, Vincekovo) on January 22, "merry Zagorje people" met at the church of St. Anthony on Hršak's hill in Krapinske toplice. Vincekovo was organized by the wineries of Boris Vuglec and Hrvoje Petrač, and the wineries of Boris Drenški and Tomislav Bolfan.
Saint Vincent was a deacon in the Spanish city of Caesarea Augustus, and during the reign of Emperor Diocletian he was tortured in Valencia, where he was buried. The feast of St. Vincent was determined by the winegrowers to start work in the vineyard.
On that day, the winegrowers meet in their vineyards, symbolically cut the vine, sprinkle it with old wine, put the vine in water, and predict from the bud what the grape harvest will be like that year. It is also customary to hang a piece of dried meat or sausage on the vine that day so that the grapes grow better and so that everything is plentiful.
The tradition of grapevine cultivation and wine production is deeply rooted in Krapina-Zagorje County, which today occupies a prominent place on the enogastronomic map of Croatia.
After the blessing of the vineyard, tamburitza players played, grilled sausages were baked and then we moved to a restaurant on Vuglec breg for garlic, blood sausages, buncek, grated potatoes, sauerkraut and štruklji.
Photos: Marko Čolić