The Kunej house of vines and wine is located in Brestanica, beside the regional road Brestanica – Senovo.
The House of Vines, Wine and Chocolate originates in the family tradition of wine making and wine growing dating back to the end of the 19th century. The foundation of the current home were constructed by Anton Kunej, who also managed to seed the respect and love for wine growing and farm work into the younger generations and set an example as a good master.
The Sunny Lion, the emblem of the Kunej family personifies the pride and tradition of valuable experience in producing vines and wine. It conceals everything the KUNEJ House of Vines, Wine and Chocolate represents. It includes vines, tendrils, grapes, vine roots, vine leaf, chalice and a glorious lion in the middle, inspired by the Trappist order from Rajhenburg. A century ago, they were the motor that pushed the development in Brestanica, but mostly they were master chocolatiers, as well as master makers of wine and liquors. The quality of the Trappist products even reached the emperor of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Franz Joseph of Austria, who awarded the IMPERIAL title to the Trappist chocolate. That is when the famous chocolate brand was born – Chocolat Impérial.
Our family has been involved in viticulture and wine making for five generations since the end of 19th century when a vineyard cottage in Sremič became the property of the Kunej family. We are currently cultivating 5 hectares of vineyards, with renovations under way on additional 3 hectares. Our vineyards are located in the wine-growing area of Sremič, Armeško and Veliki kamen. A section of the Sremič vineyards is located in the same wine-growing area where the Trappist monks once had their vineyard.
Grapes from these three locations are turned into wine in a modern wine cellar in Brestanica. Our grape variety selection is very diverse. The white grape varieties include Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Welschriesling, Yellow Muscat, while the red grape varieties include Blaufränkish, Pinot Noir, Zweigelt and Bleu de Cologne. We produce different varietal wines as well as blends of quality and premium quality wines. In addition to still wines, we also produce sparkling wines according to the classical method and also late harvest sweet wines. In 2013, we produced a special beverage, namely red wine refined with dark chocolate Chocolat Imperial.
Red wine with dark chocolate – Chocolat Impérial
During the period of reviving the Trappist chocolate IMPERIAL we created a completely new product. The idea was to combine wine with chocolate. Quality red wine from a unique grape variety selection and refined dark chocolate in well thought out proportions served as the foundation. After lengthy experimental combinations of both ingredients we managed to achieve a harmonious combination. This was a quite challenging process of combining two seemingly incompatible ingredients. Wine gives us a bit of acidity, while dark chocolate contains bitterness, sugar and thousands of other substances, which naturally occur in both products. If all these flavors are mixed together in correct proportions, the final flavor is right and full, with each individual component contributing to the whole.
Chocolat Impérial is not just a marriage of wine and chocolate, which is a mixture of two different professions, wine making and chocolate making; it is two different sets of knowledge. This is a combination of Trappist heritage and new modern winemaking skills. In the Kunej House of Vines, Wines and Chocolate we believe that this special beverage will bring together people in warm and relaxed atmosphere.
In addition to wine, our house has more than a 30 year tradition of producing vine grafts. This activity began in 1978, when we grafted approximately 10 000 grape vines as an experiment. For orders or information on vines call 00386 (0)31 337 526.
The first results were very encouraging. During the years we managed to procure modern production equipment with state-of-the-art production line, greenhouse with atmosphere control and modern cooling and storage facilities for storing initialled grafted vines in the cool storage. Similarly as with the production technology we monitor the genetic and health status of the material we cultivate. In cooperation with the Agricultural Institute of Slovenia we have a selection of parent vines of different cultivators of clone origin. We cultivate only those that were tested. Besides the health status and growth we also monitor the quality of wine. The wine from the original vineyard of Modra frankinja from Pišece is, for example, extremely rich in phenols – the antioxidants in wine that are a source of good health.
In 2013, the production of vines and wine is joined by production of chocolate. The Kunej family partnered with the City museum of Krško and Rajhenburg Castle in the project entitled “The influence of Trappist order on the Posavje countryside, acronym Trapistin” and began producing chocolate products inspired by the Trappist heritage. This means taking on the responsibility of bringing the Imperial chocolate back to life, which was once revered at the Austrian court itself. The chocolate products are produced in the House of Mozer in the direct vicinity of the renovated Rajhenburg Castle.
Be different and give your business partners something that is completely new to the Slovenian market.
Chocolate candy box
The Harmonije Posavja candies were created in the new chocolate factory in the renovated Rajhenburg Castle in the town of Brestanica, where the Trappist monks once produced the first chocolate in this part of Europe. Noble flavors of the Posavje fruit such as plums, strawberries, blueberries, wild cherries, hazel nuts and lastly grapes hide under the chocolate crust made from dark, milk or white chocolate. At the same time, we are pampered by the Welschriesling berry selection, the main white wine grape variety from the Posavje region, and the specialty from the House of Kunej – chocolate wine. The collection is harmonically supplemented by chocolate truffles with honey from the Posavje flowers.
Chocolate is returning to Brestanica after more than half a century. We are following the guidelines for making chocolate laid down by the Trappist monks at the break of the 20th century. The chocolate bar from milk chocolate with whole hazel nuts was very popular in that time. It was a symbol of Trappist chocolate, personifying quality and excellence.
Chocolate Round bars
Round bars are handmade from four types of chocolate, namely:
– dark chocolate sprinkled with dried apples
– milk chocolate sprinkled with crushed hazel nuts
– white chocolate with dark chocolate coating
– crunchy milk chocolate with bits of sponge cake and white chocolate coating
The round bars are packaged in cellophane bags with 12 pieces each. They can be inserted into handmade replica of the Trappist packaging.