Located in Snežatno. In the Goriška Brda zone of Slovenia, near the border of Italy, the Štekar winery is known for producing red and white wines made in the traditional manner, with extended skin contact and little or no Sulphur added. This area of Slovenia is a border zone which was once part of the Hapsburg empire. The hilly rugged terrain is marked with monuments to both world wars. Local villages list the names of soldiers who died a hundred years ago and whose family names still mark the local wineries. It was here, in 1985, that Roman Stekar decided to forego selling fruit from his small plot of vines to the local cooperative and make his wines in the traditional manner.
Starting with 5 hectares of vines and growing only to 10 hectares, Stekar makes Rebula (Ribolla Gialla), Malvazija (Malvasia), Pinot Gris, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The vines are all planted on steep slopes at an altitude of 180 meters and grown organically in soils rich in marl. They use neutral oak barrels in the cellar, long macerations, and only tiny amounts of SO2 at bottling. As Jure Stekar, Roman’s son and the current winemaker says: “In the wine cellar we follow our idea of natural wine where nature has been left to take its course. Wine is produced without additives, chemistry and invasive technologies. We like to explore the rich local winemaking tradition made of long macerations and spontaneous fermentations with indigenous yeasts and at the same time seek new challenges. But above all we try to pursue our goal that is to produce genuine wine that inspires emotions, tells about our land and about us.”
The Oliver Red is part of the newest line of wine from Stekar. Named for Jure’s second son Oliver, the wine is made in a fresh, bright style. Estate Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon are spontaneously fermented on the skins for only two days before a gentle pressing, making for a lightly extracted red wine that is more focused on fruit instead of tannin and structure. Once fermentation completed, the wine was moved to 500-liter used oak barrels to age for almost five months before bottling. The result is a surprisingly delightful, vibrant, and expressive wine with notes of spice, black cherry, and strawberry on the nose. Light in appearance, the palate has gobs of fruit and freshness – this is a great chill-able red that is a wonderfully juicy Cab/Merlot blend.
-Field Blend Selections