The event Mlada Portugalka (New Portugalka Wine) has taken place since 2009 on the third Saturday in October.
Portugalka or „potrgalk“ in the language of Bela krajina, is a wine of a beautiful red colour. It is fresh, drinkable, with a pleasant fruity aroma and a soft, full taste; therefore, many wine connoisseurs rank it among the best new red wines.
As an early grape sort, it is harvested soon after 15 September, and the must is suitable for drinking already on the third day after grape-harvest. Portugalka is usually mature for sale from barrel already at the end of September, or at least until 15 October. In the meantime, chestnuts ripen, and they are abundant in Bela krajina. Everyone who attends the event Mlada Portugalka in Bela krajina can tell what a great combination makes the new Portugalka wine and roast chestnuts.
Already in early afternoon, the Queen of Metliška črnina and the president of Društvo vinogradnikov Metlika (Association of Winegrowers of Metlika) arrive to the performance place by a rack wagon bearing a barrel of new Portugalka wine. A renowned oenologist taps the barrel and pouring of Portugalka wine begins.
It is additional tradition at the event to harvest Modra kavčina (Blue Franconian) grape, a descendant of the oldest vine of Maribor Lent growing in front of the Metlika Castle. Grape-harvesting takes place according to an old tradition, where clusters of grapes are manually squeezed and berries separated from their stalks. Grapes are squeezed by bare feet of the Queen of Metliška črnina, and on Martin’s Saturday, the must is baptised to become wine.