Date: 25 May, 2017, 16.00–21.00
Location: Vajdahunyad vára (Castle of Vajdahunyad), Budapest
Type of event: informal consumer tasting with wineries who produce Hárslevelű
Are you an expat in Hungary? Or you are a tourist staying in Budapest? Or maybe you live in a neighbouring country with the lack of program for tomorrow night? HÉJ is a perfect choice then. The name is an abbreviation of Hárslevelűk Éjszakája, which means the Night of Hárslevelű wines, because the tasting showcases around 20 wineries with their approximately 40–50 Hárslevelű wines – however do not expect a night tasting, the event finishes at 9 pm (of course you can go on tasting in some of the numerous wine bars of Budapest after closing).
The venue – a romantic setting
The Castle of Vajdahunyad is a replica of the original castle situated in Transylvania, Romania. Despite all appearances, was built in 1896, and is in fact a fantasy pastiche showcasing the architectural evolution through centuries and styles in Hungary. The tasting takes place in the corridors of the castle, which is covered, but open from the side: an ideal summer tasting venue.
Hárslevelű – the other promise
The grape itself is probably the most known from Tokaj, where it is the most important grape besides Furmint, the component of the most Tokaji Aszú. It is widely planted all over the country, it can be found even in the southern Villány. Late to ripen, like Furmint, but with looser bunches. It has a thicker grape skin meaning that in dry vintages the botrytis attacks it more slowly. Its wine is more aromatic than Furmint with delicate linden honey aromas, sometimes elderflower. Elegant, subtle wine can be made from Hárslevelű with refined acidity, creamy texture and a touch of spices. Its name is literally ‘linden leaf’ and comes from the shape of the leaf which resembles that of the tree. According to some recent DNA researches Furmint is the parent of Hárslevelű.
Most of the wineries are from Tokaj wine region, but there are some exceptions: Hilltop is from Neszmély and Dubicz comes from Mátra, while Spiegelberg is a small winery in Somló. All the others listed below are wineries fromone of the communes of Tokaj wine region. Do not miss Kikelet, probably the most exciting Hárslevelű wines, Zsirai, a family winery with wonderful single vineyard Hárslevelű wines (Betsek and Padi-hegy) or Sauska with clean, elegant, stunning examples of Hárslevelű.
Árvay János Családi Pincészete, Rátka
Balassa István, Tokaj
Basilicus Szőlőbirtok, Tarcal
Dubicz Borászat & Szőlőbirtok, Mátra
Gizella Pince, Tokaj
Hilltop – Kamocsay Prémium
Kikelet Pince, Tarcal
Lenkey Családi Szőlészet és Pincészet, Mád
Majoros Birtok, Tokaj
Paulay Borház, Tokaj
Royal Tokaji, Tokaj-Hegyalja
Sauska Tokaj, Tokaj
Spiegelberg Kézműves Borpince, Nagy-Somló
Tokaj-Hétszőlő Szőlőbirtok, Tokaj
Zsirai Pincészet, Mád és Somlóvásárhely
Tickets: 5900 HUF (in advance), 7500 HUF on the spot