Today is Valentine’s day – considered to be the most romantic day of the year. Many people celebrate the love for their significant others by sending cards or letters, gifts and flowers or going out on romantic dates. But we know for a fact that love goes hand in hand with good wine so on this day in the Orthodox Christian countries we celebrate an old tradition - Trifon Zarezan or the day of the vine grower.
St. Trifon was born in Comsada village, Phrygia area, Mysia in a religious family. He lived righteously and died for his beliefs during the reign of Roman Emperor Decius Trajan (249-251) when Christian persecutions were common. St. Trifon is considered a keeper of the vineyards and the celebration is in his honor. The holiday is held in the beginning of February, when the winter meets the spring and is called Zarezan (Bulgarian “режа (rezha)” - to trim/to prune), because it is related with the ritual of trimming the wine vines.
According to the national traditions early in the morning, women bake fresh bread and cook hen filled with rice or bulgur. Bringing the meal along with tasty wine, whole families go to the vineyards to do the ritual pruning. There, each farmer cuts off the first three rods and waters them with wine to secure rich harvest throughout the year. Some ethnographers believe that the roots of the holiday come from the ancient cult to Dionysus - a Greek god praised with large festivals as a patron of wine, joy and vineyards.
These rituals are not fully preformed in our modern society anymore, especially in towns, but the wine drinking and appreciation continues.
As a mere coincidence just after this, on the 15th of February, we are celebrating Infoleven’s second birthday! One day of wine drinking is clearly not enough. 😊 We will keep you posted in social media.
Wish you a magical Valentine’s day, spread love and wine all around throughout the whole year.
The Infoleven team