Bor Forras & Feher Arany
Hungary is diversity. Hungary is Budapest, the dazzling capital city on the Danube, it‘s Lake Balaton, a holiday paradise for the whole family, the Puszta with its horses and winch wells, the csárdás, the quaint inns with dancing and gypsy music, bubbling pans of goulash and paprika salami from Szegedin.
Hungary is also the old Royal-Imperial monarchy, Franz Lehár, operettas such as Countess Maritza, Bull’s Blood of Eger and Kadarka wine.
Wine production in Hungary has a great history, although it fell into oblivion for a few decades. Since the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989, the Hungarian vintners have been moving ever upwards in Europe and regaining their once superb reputation.
The region, which is located in the south of the country in the Alföld plain, was only reclaimed for wine cultivation by migrants from Württemberg in the 18th century.
The town of Hajós, once completely destroyed in the Turkish war, became the centre of the flourishing trade. The granting of market rights accelerated the development of the region, from which the town of Baja also benefi ted. Settlers from Franconia arrived here in the 18th century to grow vines and arable crops on the fertile land.
The wine-producing region of Hajós-Baja is characterised by its dry, hot summers and by its sand, loess and loamy soils.
The settlers soon discovered that cellars in the loess soils maintained a consistent temperature, which is ideal for the fermentation and storage of the wine.
Modern cellar technology and traditional wine production methods stand side by side in our winery.
On the last weekend in May, around the festival of Saint Urban, a wine festival attracts thousands of people like a magnet. The main attraction is the announcing of the winner of the Saint Urban wine competition and the vintners‘ efforts to make sure that their patron saint is benevolently inclined for the next harvest. For this reason, wine is poured over the saint‘s statue in the main square of the cellar village. Only the wine produced by the latest winner is good enough to appease him and the other “ice saints”.
This portable statue is presented each year to the winner of the great St Urban wine competition. It is a permanent visitor to our winery.
Wins of the St Urban
2003 Zweigelt Ausbruch, 2004 Cabernet
Sauvignon Barrique, 2007 Cabernet Franc
2008 Zweigelt, 2010 Zweigelt
Interview: András Schauer talks about his model company, the secret of success and his concept of wine.
- The winery does not have its own vineyards, so where do you get your grapes?
A.S.:the greatest success. Amongst the vintners in the area, we are famous for the fact that we only buy the best, fully ripe grapes, that is to say, healthy, aromatic harvests from the best locations. In addition, the vineyards have to be managed
according to our guidelines. It is very important to us.
We have built up a long-standing relationship with most of the vintners. It is creates a feeling of trust and security on both sides. In addition, we started producing just red wines in 1999 and gradually expanded our range. Today we are proud to be able to offer our customers not only red, white and rosé
wines, but also specialities such as barrique red wines and red ice wines. Our portfolio of products goes from dry to elegantly sweet.
- What makes your winery different from others, what is the secret of your success?
A. S.: Well, everything fi ts together perfectly. There are several reasons why we are successful. Firstly, we are committed to the use of modern cellar technology which guarantees gentle treatment of the harvested grapes, purity, clarity and the finest aromas in the wine. We give every wine the care that it needs. We only decide whether to use a barrique barrel or a stainless steel tank when we have
received the grapes. Secondly, I can rely 100% on every one of my experienced employees here on site.
We are a small, well-integrated team and each one of us gives everything to make wines that we and our clients love.
- What makes you so certain that you‘re on the right track?
A. S.: Just that, when we produce our wines, we really try to provide what our customers want.
We don‘t see ourselves as artists – we feel that we are craftsmen who are masters or our trade.
In addition, we are constantly pleased to be presented with international awards and prizes. It is another sign that we are on the right track.
András Schauer company manager
Tibor Bohner cellar master
Judit Simon office assistant
András Geiger cooper
“When we wanted to open a winery in Hungary 15 years ago, many of our colleagues thought we were crazy.
It‘s a good thing that we went our own way, because today, thanks to our uncompromising philosophy when it comes to quality, we can guarantee unforgettable Hungarian wine experiences.”
András Schauer, company manager
“I was totally amazed when I heard that 70% of the population of the Hungarian wine town of Hajós speak German and actually come from Baden-Württemberg.
What most impressed me, however, was the cellar village in Hajós. Some of the 1200 wine cellars can also be visited by guests. With such magnifi cent wines and excellent Hungarian food, the time passed in a fl ash.”
Sandy Harris from Brighton
“Hungary off ers the best conditions for top-quality wines. Sun, good soils, independent, strong grape varieties and a long tradition of wine production that
dates back to ancient times. The vintners are proud of their wines, but not big-headed, and they accept advice that makes their wines even better.”
Manfred H., German winemaker in Hungary
“Of course we‘re proud. After all, our winery has once again been awarded a Gold Medal in the VinAgora
international wine competition, which is part of VinoFed. is means that we‘re right at the top amongst the Hungarians. Not only are we setting new standards, but our work and commitment are being recognised and our winery is becoming famous beyond
the borders of our homeland, and that‘s a pretty great feeling. ”
András Schauer, company manager
“It was clear from the beginning: Our winery would be located in Hajós, in the heart of the Hajós-Baja wine
region. Because here, in this lowland plain, there is the most sunshine and the warmest climate anywhere in Hungary. In 1999, the local vintner sent their grapes to us for the fi rst time. Lots of things have happened since then. Year after year, we‘ve been able to improve the quality. Everyone has helped. Luckily,
because we can only deliver fi rst-class wines if we have healthy, juicy grapes.”
Petra Bernhard, oenologist