Welcome to the world of Glamping. Glamorous Camping: A way to reach nature and relaxation without giving up life’s little luxuries.
During four days at Big Berry, I was able to taste local food and drink, become acquainted with the local culture and was welcomed in to Mother Nature’s peaceful Slovenian home.
The particular site I visited is situated at the edge of a small village in Southeast Slovenia in the Bela Krajina: “White Frontier”. Members of surrounding communities were eager to share their goods and services, allowing visitors access to local produce. Breakfast consisted of Pogača bread, freshly made Lamut apple juice, locally sourced honey, and a variety of other products from the Bela Krajina region. Zlati Ghee was available in a variety of flavors, compliments of a company run by one of the camp’s own. Some days, fresh cow’s milk was included. Another day, a personalized linen tote bag made from local flax carried the morning’s meal.
The campsite has recently celebrated its grand opening on June 30, but when I visited was still opened exclusively for bloggers and journalists to visit. We were there to test the waters and to help spread the word about what is the first of many Glampsites by Big Berry to sprout throughout Europe. Visiting guests would be advised to rent a car so as to enjoy the surrounding areas, but as Big Berry was still in its budding stages, an intern happily took myself and other visitors to various locales.
Click on an image to see the photographs of Vizir Pivovarna up-close:
We started the trip with at Vizir Pivovarna, a brewery owned and operated by a couple who’ve both earned advanced degrees in food sciences. They originally put their studies to work by producing wine, but because nearly every family in the region produces their own wine, they found a more advanced market in the craft beer industry. I can attest to their skill after tasting samples and touring their brewery. Specialty Pale Ales like “Gringo” and “Maximus” were a welcome change from the traditional pilsners offered through the rest of Eastern Europe.
Afterward, we stopped by Pecaric Oljarna for samples of family-produced oils ranging from cannabis to hazelnut, and later in the week were poured glasses directly from the casks at Malnaric. For all tastings, we drove to the owners’ estates and were invited in to their homes. Their own families were milling about, stopping to stay while minding their own business. At Malnaric, we were entertained by the owner’s youngest son and his chocolate-covered face, soiled by a secret dessert sampling. Busted and sugar-buzzed, he had us laughing all through the tour and slight sips of wine.
Click on an image to see the photographs of Pecaric Oljarna up-close:
The most interesting of all tastings was done at the campsite. A visitor from Simonič Winery came to Big Berry and showed us his true commitment by agreeing to serve us under the most bizarre (I mean…glamorous…) circumstances. With the free-spirited, try-everything-once attitude of the interns and visiting bloggers, it was decided that despite the river’s frigid temperatures we’d sample these summery wines on a deck meant to sink when walked upon, allowing visitors a chance to relax in the river without the chance to be whisked away by currents.
Once everyone was perched on the deck’s railing like a line of birds waiting for their morning feeding, wine was served. Our host was in high spirits despite the clearly uncomfortable position he was in; For although we all were able to lift our feet up, he was fully committed to serving us while standing thigh-high in the water. After a few bubbly pours, lots of chilled shrills of delight and several exaggerated toasts, we scrambled to dry land. Our host exited to warm his numbed legs in the sun and not once lost his smile. It was a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience and a surprising test of strength.
Click on an image to see the photographs of our chilled wine tasting up-close:
What would Glam Camping be without wine tasting in the river?? That never happened while camping in the Northwoods!
Did you miss an article?? Read Miss Maps’s Intro to Glam Camping: The Struggles of Glamping at Slovenia’s Big Berry HERE
Hungry? Thirsty? Ready to try produce from Bela Krajina, Slovenia for yourself? Here are some links to help get you started:
Zlati Ghee – Made with time, love, energy and MUSIC: Click HERE
Simonič Winery – Fully committed to serving you chilled wines, no matter what the circumstances: Click HERE
Vizir Pivovarna – Bringing craft beer to Southern Slovenia : Click HERE
Pecaric Oljarna – Creating every type of oil under the sun (cannabis oil, anyone?) : Click HERE
Malnarič Vinogradinska – Pouring you wine straight from the cask : Click HERE