The late, great Stanko Radikon is commonly referred to by natural wine enthusiasts as the Godfather of organic, biodynamic viticulture as we know it today. Before his passing in 2016, Stanko tended the same fields his grandfather did in the 1930's, preserving the techniques and traditions of the family and the land, whilst simultaneously pioneering and experimenting with new techniques, equipment and technology.
Over Stanko's 36 vintages of experience, he worked to create wine perfectly in balance and reflective of the land. He used grapes indigenous to the Friuli region of Italy and Slovenia (Radikon wines are nestled in the North-Eastern reaches of Italy), and pioneered extended macerations of his white wines; leaving his red wines on the skins for 30+ days and sometimes his whites for over 6 months! Only the indigenous yeast on the skins at harvest are used in the fermentation process and pneumatic presses are used to press the juice off the skins as gently as possible, preserving the wine as ultimate expressions of the land and the vintage. Extended macerations also prevented the necessity of sulphur addition to their wine.
All of this may seem quite commonplace these days - but no-one was doing this 40 years ago, and we have Stanko to thank for taking the risks so we can reap the rewards of his philosophy and legacy he left behind. Stanko also experimented with innovative cork closure designs and, after stating that a 750mL bottle is a poor size to share between two people, instead designed his own 500mL and 1L bottles for his wine. We must say, it is hard to disagree with him!
After Stanko's passing, Sasa stepped up to take his father's place at the helm; he had big shoes to fill, however, Sasa has found them to be the perfect fit, and Radikon wines has flourished through his tending. Sasa grew up working in the fields and learning at his innovative father's side, honing his own craft. He certainly received Stanko's knack for innovation too; the launch of Radikon's 'S' series is made with shorter maceration times and the tiniest drop of sulphur to introduce new (potentially sceptical) wine-lovers to the wonders of Radikon wines.