Ján Krampl told Pravda about his beginnings in the vineyards of Rača and how he became the head of the local cellar. You can read the entire interview here: https://bit.ly/vinocomadrzinadvodou
What were your first contacts with the vineyard and wine?
Of the pleasant ones, a ripe grape berry in the mouth, mom's strudel, the first glass of burčiak, and of the prosaic hoe, scissors. Even after my parents took the vineyards to the cooperative, my parents connected my future with wine. They sent me to the school in Modransk, and when I came back, they put me straight into viticulture in the cooperative. They threw me into the water, for me then it was the production of grafts to show what I was worth.
Did you decide?
The year 1958 was extraordinary. Blessed with a harvest, but also with rain and the sudden arrival of winter. On the fifth of November, severe frosts hit unexpectedly. The soil froze and thawed only in the spring of the following year. The team was shaking with fear of what would happen to the grafts. They were stacked in graves, on which more than twenty carters with horse-drawn carts cleverly brought steaming farmyard manure to prevent the seedlings from freezing. But we made it. In primitive conditions, each of the sixty yesterday peasants, today cooperative workers, grafted from 600 to 1 grafts per day, depending on their skill. Altogether it was a million grafts. Can you imagine it today?
Not really, because most Slovak winegrowers import grafts from Austria, Italy or Hungary.
It is the sad reality of Slovak viticulture, in which even the production of vine seedlings has collapsed. It only illustrates the position in which not only viticulture and winemaking, but also agriculture and food production have found themselves. In Rača, 40 years ago, the vineyards spread over 325 hectares, people cultivated the vines on 2100 plots, which best describes the conditions from which it was based.
How do you remember the cooperative years?
As for the years of the great renewal of the Rača vineyards, which took into account the entire territory above Rača and the adjacent area of Bratislava. In the XNUMXs, not only broadband terraces were built, but also catchment tanks for storm water. By restoring the vineyards, Krasňany and Rača were protected from heavy water, the reward for this was wine from new plantings of Green Veltín and Vlach Riesling, and the greening of the town, which is emphasized so much today.
What was the wine like back then and how did you get into making it?
Wine is always an image of the time and its tastes and people's mindset. Once there was a wine tasting in our cooperative cellar, I think it was in 1962, the cellar master boasted that he had even better wine at home than the cooperative wine. That pissed off the chairman at the time, and I didn't even know how, I became the boss of the cellar. It was clear to me that I would last only as long as our wine was the best. That's how my journey to good wine began at the cooperative in Rač. We operated wine bar U kmotra (former German cultural center), which was full of people from the city on Saturday afternoon. Visitors also besieged the co-operative viecha in the center of Rača as well as the viecha on Nedbalová Street, where famous Bratislava actors used to go. Imagine that we sold from 900 to 1200 liters of wine per day in just one bottle, served with slaughterhouse specialties.