However, the guests and visitors who were asked to leave the premises did not lose their good mood, they gathered in the yard and wondered what had happened. The alarm is believed to have been caused by grill smoke from a nearby food truck.
The most important Lithuanian wine event, where knowledge, experiences, news are shared, lectures, seminars, discussions and tastings are held, will take place today and tomorrow, May 6, Saturday. Its launch was announced by opening a symbolic bottle of wine from the famous Portuguese winery Niepoort.
The bottle dedicated to the 700th anniversary of Vilnius and decorated with a label designed by the Lithuanian artist Antanas Dubra was opened by the winemaker Marco Niepoorts who came to the exhibition and the winner of the 2023 World Sommelier Championship, the Latvian Raimondas Tomsonas.
The sommelier, who won the world champion title in February of this year, is convinced that the traditions fostering wine culture in the Baltic region are an important step towards the future of winemaking. “It’s amazing to see how many people are interested in wines, want to know about them, to understand them,” said the sommelier, whose tickets for the tasting of non-European Pinot Noir wines on Saturday sold out instantly. Those gathered in the hall, which could accommodate almost a hundred people, tasted the wines of exceptional quality “Pinot Noir”.
The world sommelier champion will speak in the evening at the “Wine Days” forum, which will be hosted by Aidas Puklevičius. R. Thomson will share insights about the present and future of the sommelier profession, reveal the secrets of how to become the best sommelier in the world. His advice to wine lovers is simple: keep an open mind and embark on an adventure of discovery.
The organizers of the exhibition – Arūnas and Rasa Starkai – welcomed the guests of the exhibition opening. The first specialized wine shop in Lithuania “Vyno klubas” founded by them is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.
An important highlight of the opening of “Wine Days” is the awarding of the winners of the Lithuanian Wine Championship. At the beginning of the award ceremony, the president of the Lithuanian Sommelier Association, Arminas Darasevičius, also spoke about the birth of the wine industry in the country.
The commission of sommeliers and wine experts evaluated 70 grape wines, 26 meads, 14 ciders and apple wines, 60 wines from fruits, berries and plants at this year’s Lithuanian Wine Championship.
According to the commission, this year was a difficult year for red grape wines, which is why they did not receive high ratings. The winner of the white dry grape wine category was Rasa Šoliūnė. At this year’s championship, a record number of meads were served for tasting – as many as 26 meads. The top-rated drink of the championship is Liquid Bloom’s semi-sweet mead, created with smoked malt, buckwheat honey, chokeberry and apple juice. “Dainija” mead made from forest honey was recognized as the best in the sweet mead category. “It seems that soon the mead category will have its own competition,” said A. Darasevičius.
Winemaker Dainius Matulevičius of “Riešės krašto vynas” collected the most awards in the championship. The commission even evaluated two ciders he made from pears, sweet quince and cherry wines.
The cider “Sv. The Temptation of Anthony” from Anthony’s apples.
Ilzenberg winery has been awarded two medals: for apple ice wine and for sweet cherry wine. The award for the best semi-sweet rhubarb wine and the best quince wine went to the “RK výnas” winery. Roksala was awarded for the best rhubarb sparkling wine and the best dry apple wine.
Wineries “Geri meti, “Prussian wine”, JE Kaubriai, “Miella”, Renolda Stepanauskaitė – Kubilienė, “Labora” gathered after the award for the wines of rowanberries, chokeberries, gooseberries, raspberries, black currants, brambles and other fruits, berries and plants. “Wine charms”, Rolandas Šimkus, Valdas Šalaševičius, Vidas Skrinskas.
Award-winning Lithuanian wines, mead, fruit, berry and plant wines will be available to taste in the Lithuanian wine zone, where a record number of winemakers are participating this year.
Another distinguished guest came to Vilnius to participate in the exhibition – Felicity Carter, influential wine journalist, long-time editor-in-chief of the wine business magazine “Meininger’s Wine Business International”, executive editor of “The Drop” search engine, judge of international wine championships. At the exhibition, she will give two lectures – on global red wine trends and on investing in wine.
Peer Pfeiffer, the export director of Borie-Manoux, Bordeaux wine producers and trading house, responsible for 35 countries in Europe and Asia, will also talk about return on investment at the exhibition. Michal Bardelis, a Polish wine journalist, will talk about the hierarchy of Voketija wine at a tasting organized by the elite VDP association.
Martynas Pravilonis, the best sommelier in Lithuania, will teach how to combine food with non-alcoholic drinks at the tasting. The desire to reduce the amount of alcohol is a global trend in recent years. It will also be discussed today in the “Wine Days” forum.
At the exhibition, it will be possible to observe how wine combines sensory, emotional, social and intellectual experiences – there will be music and wine pairing sessions, and film screenings of the Scanorama festival. As many as eight wineries from Ukraine are participating in “Wine Days” this year: from Kyiv, Mykolaiv to Odessa. Winemakers from Italy, Hungary, France, Spain, Australia and other traditional wine-producing countries will present their wine at the exhibition.