Police have said they will be out in force on the roads on the weekend as Croats celebrate Martinje, or St. Martain’s Day, a day where the grape must be “baptised”, and is marked with a lot of wine drinking.
Martinje is celebrated in many towns and villages around Zagreb, particularly in the hillside wine cellars around Dugo Selo where St. Martain is the patron saint.
The holy day of wine (officially 11 November) is also celebrated in many other towns around Croatia. It is an occasion when many wine makers and their friends give thanks to St. Martin for a good harvest and young wine.
These celebrations date back to pre-Christian times and mark the period when works outside of the home, in the fields, would come to an end and preparations for the winter would begin. In the wine growing areas this is the time that marks the end of all vineyard activities.