Verus letniki

VINTAGES

Due to the constantly alternating warm, cold, rainy and sunny periods, the vintages differ greatly from one year to the next. They may sometimes look similar, but no two vintages are quite the same.

From the beginning of the growth period to the end of the harvest, we monitor the weather daily. On the basis of meteorological data and many years of experience, we decide on what needs to be done in the vineyard, paying special attention as harvest approaches. This is how we attain the best possible quality and desired style of wine in any vintage and in all varieties.

Verus 2015

2020

Winter, like some of the previous ones, was mild and snowless. Too warm winter months encourage early budding and pose a risk of spring frost. It cooled down in late March, snow fell in mid-April and budding began at normal times. Due to cold spells in April and May, the growing season started a bit later than in previous years.

Flowering began on 1 June. Due to the colder weather, it was slower but went smoothly anyway. It was also colder in late spring and early summer, with frequent rainfall. The summer was beautiful, sunny, not too hot, without a lot of precipitation, storms and hail. Grape ripening took place at moderate temperatures, which are excellent for aroma development.

As we were preparing for the harvest, pleased that we had taken the year off without a hitch, on August 30, the last hot and steamy day of the year, we were caught in a severe hailstorm. Strong gusts of wind knocked down trees and exposed the roofs of houses. The storm covered much of our wine-growing district. It spared only the eastern (Ivanjkovci) and western (Kog) part. Many vineyards have suffered damage—to a varying extent, depending on the exposure of each vineyard. Two of our vineyards: Lešnica and Brebrovnik, were severely affected by the hail—the vines lost so much leaf mass that the grapes did not ripen, and we had to eliminate it. In other vineyards, the damage was not severe. Dry, sunny weather allowed the grapes to ripen normally. Because the hail was so late, the vine shoots were already mature, woody and without deep wounds. Therefore, there will be no major problems with the pruning next year.

The harvest started a week later than in previous years. Between 9 September and 6 October, we harvested the crop without any problems on typical, beautiful sunny days with cold nights. The hail loss was 30%. During the harvest, we carefully selected well-ripened, healthy grapes and obtained an excellent base for all varieties of 2020 wines.

Verus 2015

2019

This winter, especially February, was characterised by above-average temperatures without snow. During this time, the most important task in the vineyards is pruning. The latter was particularly difficult in vineyards where we experienced strong hail in the past year, as the offshoots were heavily damaged.

Up to the spring, there was a great lack of rainfall, and the moisture content of the soil was insufficient. In April and May, the temperatures cooled down, and growth slowed down as well. The flowering started on 7 June, which is a week or two later than in the past, warmer years. Throughout the years, this has been the usual time of flowering in our area. Due to the warm weather, the flowering took place quickly, and the heavy rainfall at the beginning of the summer significantly strengthened growth. August was dry and hot, and during cold nights the ripening was expedited.

The harvest started on 10 September. The nice weather allowed it to be held without any problems. The quantity and quality of the crop were optimal.

The 2019 Vintage was completed without adverse weather events. This year was a bit cooler than a few years before, but just right for a typical, good vintage of the Štajerska Region: ripe grapes with nice acidity and intense aroma in all varieties.

Verus 2015

2018

The beginning of the year was warm but February welcomed us with a true winter, with a lot of snow and constant temperatures below 0oC. The coldest was at the end of February and in the first days of March, when we measured -13oC in vineyards and -22oC in the valleys. This winter frost was a huge threat as the vine was partially awake already in January, but there was no damage to speak of.

Winter persisted until the end of March, then it suddenly warmed up. Due to the abundance of moisture and above-average temperatures growth started early. Many rainy days, warm weather and intensive growth have caused a strong phenomenon of downy mildew. Flowering started on 23rd May. It was happening in nice weather but it ended all too quickly.

June was hot, humid, with a lot of moisture. Storms began to appear. Earlier, more frequently and more intense than usual. On 8 June a storm came along with the first hail and caused visible damage on the vineyards in Ivanjkovci and Brebrovnik. Four days later there was an even stronger wind and hailstorm in the same two areas, which caused the vineyards big yield losses. Due to the strong winds, leaves and buds were damaged. The vine needed 3 weeks to recover. Vineyards in other areas did not suffer any damage.

Summer was free of storms, not too hot, the ripening of the grapes was nice and fast. We started harvesting on 6 September due to construction delays in the new cellar, early on the date, but high time according to the maturity of the grapes. We had to hurry. The sunny and moderately warm September enabled good ripening of the grapes and a smooth course of harvesting allowed us to finish on 25 September. The grapes were nice, healthy and mature. The first vintage in the new cellar is excellent, we produced wines with emphasized variety and a very rich flavour.

Verus 2015

2017

January was very cold. The temperatures were well below zero, some days below -12°C, and in the lower lying vineyards even a few degrees cooler, bordering on winter frost. This was followed by an exceptionally warm February and March, so the budding started early. In mid-April, when the buds were already developed, it got colder again. The ingress of cold air caused a spring frost on 21 April. The temperatures between 5am and 6am were below -1.0°C. In individual micro-locations – the lower, closed, western terrains – cold air stayed longer and these vineyards suffered damage. Especially the varieties which bud early and whose buds were already more developed. The Yellow Muscat lost 60% of the buds and the Furmint 20%. Other varieties did not suffer any greater damage.

Spring continued with warm weather and the flowering started as early as on 30 May. In summer, the weather was exceptionally warm and dry. On 12 June, we barely avoided hail, which fell only a few 100 metres away from our vineyards in Ivanjkovci, Radomerje and Jeruzalem. The hot, dry summer promoted the ripening of grapes and we started the harvesting on 30 August.

The start of the harvest was excellent, while in the second half of September the grapes were attacked by botrytis due to the fast ripening and the numerous rainy days. Since we started the harvest at the right time, we harvested most of the grapes in optimal condition. We were already finished on 28 September. We suffered crop losses due to botrytis in the Riesling and Furmint.

That year we were threatened by all the possible natural disasters. Luckily, we avoided the winter frost and survived the spring frost, hail, summer heat and September rain without any serious consequences. We produced mature, healthy grapes and got a great vintage with very rich wines.

Verus 2016

2016

The cold January, when temperatures were most of the time below zero, was followed by an above-average warm February, March and April. Bud bursting started a bit earlier, which brings always along the risk of spring frost.

By the end of April, when the offshoot already developed 4-5 leaves, the climate experienced a sharp cool down. As of 26th April the temperatures have fallen below zero on lower areas, in valleys they were recorded up to -4oC. In addition, 10 cm of snow has fallen the day after. What followed were three days of great uncertainty. Some more snow, a bit low temperatures and we could have lost the entire harvest.

The vines recovered after a few days and the growth continued in its normal pace. The blooming started on 2nd June and progressed without any problems. The vineyards in Ivanjkovci and Jeruzalem were hit by hail on 6th July but the grapes remained unharmed. The summer was relatively cold and the ripening was slowed down.

The end of August experienced a sunny and dry weather and the harvest started on 9th September. Due to fine weather no major problems occurred and the harvest ended on 6th October with the Furmint vineyard in Jeruzalem.

Vintage 2016 was truly dramatic. We have survived the spring frost and hail without major consequences and produced grapes that fully meet our high-set measures.

Verus 2015

2015

Winter was warm. In January there were some days with an average temperature above 8°C, which in theory is enough to trigger the start of vegetation. February was colder but there were no extreme low temperatures.

April grew warm rapidly and budburst soon started. However, the weather remained dry and cooled down thus slowing the process down again. Flowering started on May 31th, a few days earlier than the long-term average. During flowering, the weather remained fine; flowering ended in just ten days for all varieties.

Summer was hot with enough rainfall. On August 16th, a brief hail storm in Jeruzalem village scared us. Due to their bigger grape size, only the Furmint grapes showeda small amount of damage. The affected berries dried out later thanks to hot days, dry weather and wind. This weather pattern accelerated ripening which meant that on southern sites harvest had to be done earlier than expected.

Harvest started on September the 2nd. The weather during the harvest was fine and very warm. The grapes were perfectly healthy and ripe. There were some rainy days at the end of September which interrupted the harvesting but the majority of the grapes were already in by then. The harvest ended in the first days of October. Shortly after our last day of harvest the weather quickly started to become cold and rainy for the rest of the month.

Thanks to the right harvest timing our fruit retained an excellent natural balance of acidity and aromatics. Because of our care to keep crop levels correct, the 2015 vintage wines have good, rich concentration and flavour.

Verus 2014

2014

Most of the winter weather was mild and without snow. At the end of January freezing rain paralyzed whole of Slovenia for 10 days, luckily with no serious damage in our vineyards.

Warm spring weather followed and budburst was early. Flowering started on 27th May with some rainy periods. Summer months were unusually cold and rainy with July and August recording rainfalls well above average. Dry and windy weather was expected for late summer but rainfall during September was recorded at 212 mm.

We started harvest on 17th September. Picking required a lot of patience and precision. We had to train our team of grape pickers to select only the ripe and healthy fruit.

The quality of grapes, which came to the winery, was excellent, though the yield loss was unfortunately huge: between 40% and 70 %. As a result of cold and prolonged ripening time, the varietal expression and flavour of our 2014 wines are beautiful.

Verus 2013

2013

The winter was quite long with much rain. January and February were hit by snowfalls of even up to 80 cm and the cold weather continued until the end of March. Melting snow in spring caused flooding in valleys, whereas those vineyards where the soil is heavier, numerous landslides occurred that swept away almost entire vineyards. Our vineyards, however, are located on lighter sandy soil, apart from the vineyard in Brebrovnik which consists of mostly clay soil.

The excessive soil moisture and hasty warming contributed to good bursting of buds and rich growth. The weather at the end of May worsened with morning temperatures falling below 10°C which nearly halted the growth. The blossoming started immediately after the warming or around June 7, which is a few days earlier from the recorded average in previous years, and completed in twelve days. The summer was marked by numerous exceptionally hot periods; 38°C were recorded on 8th August. The growth was lush with grapes developing very quickly and the ripening beginning quite early. The period from blossoming until ripening was significantly shorter from the usual time periods. The weather cooled down at the end of August bringing quite a number of rainy days.

The September, as well, was cooler from the average which slowed down the process of ripening.

We had to hurry up with the harvest in order to prevent fruit-rotting. We started the harvest with Sauvignon blanc vineyards on 8th September and finished with Furmint vineyards on 3rd October.

We experienced several rainy periods but still found some sunny days for the harvesting. Although we were deprived of a longer sunny and dry period, we were still glad of having some cool weather that helped us to preserve the varietal aromas during the harvest. In terms of volume, the produce was slightly below the projections.

Vintage 2013 is characterized by a long and cold winter with abundant snow, a changeable spring, and a summer whose first part was very hot while the second part was marked by excessively rainy and cool weather. Despite the lack of sun during harvesting, we can boast of quality grapes that revealed excellent varietal aromas.

Verus 2012

2012

Year started with warm January and very cold February. The coldest day was the 8th of February with -15°C. Due to very little precipitation during the winter there was a drought danger at the end of March. Bud growth started in the first days of April, but in the low land there was -1,6°C on 9th of April and some of Muskateller, Chardonnay and Furmint buds were damaged by the frost. Flowering started on 25th of May; same as last year and a week earlier than average. The summer was the hottest in the last years. We had very little precipitation but luckily in the right time, if the vineyard had balanced growth. The hottest day was August the 24th with 36°C.

The harvest started on 3rd of September. Because all varieties were ripe at once we had to speed up with harvest. The harvest ended on the last summer day the 21st of September, which never happened before. This was 3-4 weeks earlier than average.

During the harvest the grapes were in perfect condition, sugar levels high and surprisingly varietal characteristics preserved.

Vintage 2012 was very close to winter frost, very close to spring frost and spring drought. It was one of the hottest in the summer and the harvest finished before autumn started. Because of the balanced growth of the vines and good planning of the harvest we successfully overcome all the weather difficulties. The crop was 10% lower than expected but of excellent quality.

Verus 2011

2011

We experienced a moderate winter, however, it was long-lasting. The low temperatures lasted all the way to the end of March. This was followed by a sudden and considerable rise in temperature that accelerated the budding. We were concerned about the occasional spring cool spells. In the beginning of May, when the buds were already well-developed, the temperatures dropped to 2°C, and there was some frost in the valleys and low-lying terrains. The vineyards were not affected.

Despite the cool spells, flowering started early (May 25th) and continued in the good weather without any problems. There was not much rain and we began to experience a water shortage by the end of June. The dry and hot weather continued, with growth almost stopping in the middle of summer. Fortunately, enough rain fell at the end of July to ensure the uninterrupted growth of the grapes. August and September were dry and hotter than usual, which sped up the ripening process.

For this reason we lost no time with harvesting. We started on September 7th with the Sauvignon, finishing on October 4th with the Furmint. Weather was favourable the entire time – sunny and with no rain. The temperatures were high and we had to be very careful to transport the grapes so that they were undamaged and cool.

Despite the high temperatures during the harvest, we were able to preserve the varietal characteristics. The grapes were very ripe with an above-average sugar content. We produced somewhat more than we had anticipated.

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