A great man is one who collects knowledge the way a bee collects honey and uses it to help people overcome the difficulties they endure - hunger, ignorance and disease!
- Nikola Tesla

Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists.
- Franklin Roosevelt

While their territory has been devastated and their homes despoiled, the spirit of the Serbian people has not been broken.
- Woodrow Wilson

Vranac in American Vineyards

Wine migrations from the Balkans to the USA do not come as a surprise. The story about Zinfandel's beginnings on the American continent is well-known. The most important institution in the USA focused on grapevine research is UC Davis. It also founded a vine nursery where all new varieties of grapevine on the American soil are checked for viruses and further propagated and sold to commercial nurseries throughout the United States.

In 2010, the so-called "2010 Protocol" was launched, defining the criteria that grapevine must meet in order to be planted in their new foundation vineyard Russell Ranch.

Since then, growing number of grape varieties has been arriving at the Russell Ranch Collection, where continued work is done to prepare them for potential commercial use. The first specimens of Vranac arrived in the 1970s, thanks to prof. Lazar Avramov. Later on, a group of varieties from the Balkans (Montenegro, Macedonia, Dalmatia) arrived from Slovenia to UC Davis nursery and implementation of the 2010 Protocol began with an ambition to place those vines in the Russell Ranch foundation vineyard.

Good news is that the vines were granted the status of approved in 2018 so the first certified virus-free Vranac vines were planted in Russell Ranch foundation vineyard. They will be used to provide limited quantity of vines for commercial nurseries. We hope that in the years to come, more and more wineries from the USA will find an interest in planting Vranac. The pioneer in this venture is Opolo Winery located in Paso Robles, California. Rick Quinn, the owner of Opolo winery, has family roots in Herzegovina and Montenegro, so it doesn't come as a surprise that he feels the region of former Yugoslavia particularly close to his heart. In addition, to mark the celebration of the 800th anniversary of the Serbian Orthodox Church, Opolo Winery created a wine label Autocephaly that will be distributed throughout the United States.

This is a great piece of news for Vranac and it is in line with recent California trends where more and more wineries are experimenting with Mediterranean grape varieties to respond timely to global climate change. There are indications that in the coming decades, it will be increasingly difficult to cultivate premium quality Cabernet Sauvignon in some parts of California, so wineries have already started experimenting with adequate alternatives. Anyhow, knowing the family links between Kratošija / Zinfandel and Vranac, it won't be difficult to present qualities of Vranac to US winemakers.

Source: Vinopedia, 08/18/2019


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Marta Milosevic-Brankovic

Marta Milosevic-Brankovic was born in Belgrade, Serbia. She has captured the attention of audience and critics alike since her concerto debut at Ganz Rudolph Hall in Chicago in 2005 where one of the most famous pianists alive, Abbey Simon (Professor at the Juilliard School) personally attended the concert and highly acclaimed her performance of Bach and Chopin. At the age of six Marta took her first piano lesson and already a year later she played her first public concert. She was 21 when she graduated at the Music Art Academy in Belgrade as the youngest student with the highest GPA in the generation. She received her early musical training in class of Russian Professor Jakuthon Mlhailovich, a graduate from the Moscow Conservatory. At the same time she has also completed Media studies at the University of Art in Belgrade. During her studies, she worked with eminent artists from her country and auended a number of piano master courses of the following Professors: Sijavus Gadzijev (Moscow). Tamara Stefanovic (Koeln). Dr. David Abot (Zurich-New York), Dr. Tatjana Rankovich (New York), Dr. Omitry Rachmanov (Chicago-New York) and many others.

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Man and the God-Man

by Archimandrite Justin Popovich

"Father Justin Popovich, pan-orthodox witness to the God-revealed and Christ-given Eternal Truth, whose testimony can be even seen within this collection of his articles - that "the mystery of Truth is not in material things, not in ideas, not in symbols, but in Personhood, namely the Theanthropic Person of the Lord Christ, Who said: I am the Truth (John 14:6), Truth perfect, never diminished, always one and the same in its complete fullness - yesterday, today, and forever (Heb.13:8)."

The treasure to be found in this anthology of neopatristic syntheses consists of: "Perfect God and perfect man" - Nativity Epistle, where Fr Justin boldly exclaim that "man is only a true man when he is completely united with God, only and solely in God is man a man, true man, perfect man, a man in whom all the fullness of Godhead lives."; "The God-man" - The foundation of the Truth of Orthodoxy - Ava Justinian language of love in Christ-centered reflections of Truth; "The Supreme Value and Infallible Criterion"- contemporary philosophical reflections on visible and invisible realities; "Sentenced to Immortality" - a homily on the Resurrection or Our Lord Jesus Christ; "Humanistic and Theanthropic Culture"-criticism of European anti-Christian culture; "Humanistic and Theanthropic Education" - indicative pondering of consequences of education without God.. ; "The Theory of Knowledge of Saint Isaac the Syrian" - Faith, prayer, love, humility, grace and freedom, the purification of the intellect, mystery of knowledge; "A Deer in a Lost Paradise" - Ava's renowned poetic essay, a confession, and deepest longing for all-sweetest Jesus...