Gjerkeš – Woodstock, 2018

Gjerkeš – Woodstock, 2018
Photo: Mihaela Majerhold Ostrovršnik

Anybody up for some good ol’ rock ‘n roll? Well, we are, and the case calls for a wine capturing the essence of this rebellious spirit. We’re in Prekmurje, where Leon Gjerkeš and his family produce some excellent wines, including Woodstock, a Chardonnay assembled of three parts, one matured in French barriques, one in American and one in stainless vats.

The rebellious spirit of this wine symbolises the stylistic deviation from other, more classical wines of the Gjerkeš range. Produced for the first time in 2012, it was actually something Leon was still looking at and learning. He was basically playing with new oak and looking where it can lead his Chardonnay.

Such was this impact he decided to produce it every three years and naming it Woodstock, partially due to the rebellious reasons aforementioned but most and for all as this symbolises what you can expect when opening a bottle. Wood, lots of it, but all of this playing a lovely composition, a little rough on the edges, yet soft and fresh. It’s like listening to Janis Joplin’s version of Piece of my heart. As a matter of fact, you should play it while sipping this fine nectar!

Grapes of Chardonnay were handpicked, destemmed and crushed. After a short maceration at controlled temperatures, the most fermented and matured for eighteen months in a combination of new American and French barriques and a part in stainless vats, all of this with constant stirring of fine lees. Finally, equal parts were united to form this rebellious, woo-doo child. There you go, Jimmy Hendrix wrote the next song to pair with this wine while sipping the next glass. I’m sure you won’t stop at just one glass here …

Woodstock charms with its golden yellow colour and dense texture. It’s like the glass is wearing a jacket with fringes.

Its aroma is intense and sophisticated. It says wood right away, but then aromas of dried herbs like sage open up. They are followed by butter, almonds and finally ripe peach, candied lemon peel, dried orange and slices of tropical fruit, with a slight resinous and smoky finish.

The taste is dry, we detect softness, but Jenis just pulls her edgy “Yeeeeah”, letting us know the wine is a little rough and astringent around the edges. The alcohol is well integrated, with bright acidity and minerality, leaving a slightly spicy finish. An elegant, full-bodied wine with a persistent aftertaste with oak imparted flavours paving the way to the children of the revolution.

Ok, I let my hippy spirit wander a little. A bottle of this wine will cost you approximately 25 Eur and is currently available at However, I suggest you visit Leon and indulge in the whole range of Gjerkeš wines and their unique terroir.

Photo: Mihaela Majerhold – Ostrovršnik

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