Rózsakő – Szászi Winery
Rózsakő is a Badacsony specialty. There are only 15 hectares (37 acres) planted in the entire country, almost exclusively in Badacsony. The grape is a crossing of Kéknyelű and Budai Zöld, two grapes from the region which have a special relationship. Kéknyelű only has female flowers, so it depends on the wind and another variety (most often Budai Zöld) for fertilization.
This variety was created in 1957 by Professor Ferenc Király, but was only designated an official variety in 2003. Király worked at the wine research institute in Pécs during the 1950s developing new grape crossings which were well-suited to Hungarian soil, and resistant to frost and common vine diseases. According to locals, Rózsakő has special magical powers. It is named after an important Badacsony landmark, a large basalt rock called the Rózsakő where poet Sándor Kisfaludy and his wife, Róza Szegedi, were known to sit and gaze out at the lake.
Rózsakő means “Rózsa’s stone.” According to local legend, if a couple in love sits on this stone, they will get married that year. The primary goal in the creation of Rózsakő was to pollinate Kéknyelű, but it is much more than that. This is a special variety—leaner, lighter, and fruitier than Olaszrizling, with a zesty acidity. Grapes were hand-harvested at the end of September, and spontaneous fermentation (and aging) was in stainless steel tanks to preserve all of the fresh acidity and floral aromas. The wonderful thing about the Badacsony terroir is its wines with distinctive mineral characteristics. This one definitely has that, and is driven by its acidity (with a tiny bit of residual sugar for balance). This is a light-bodied (yet creamy) organic wine, oozing with citrus, peach, flowers, green apples, and lime. It’s great with all manner of seafood. The Muscadet of Badacsony.
|Bottle size (ml)|
*Prices shown include Hungarian VAT (27%). Final prices are calculated based on the VAT of your shipping country.
Badacsony is one of Hungary’s iconic regions. Along with Tokaj and Somló, it was famed across Europe for its characterful, full-bodied, mineral white wines. These three regions form a kind of Holy Trinity of Hungarian white wine volcanic winemaking regions, with unique, concentrated wines capable of long aging.
Located on the western reaches of the northern shore of Lake Balaton, the magnificent truncated volcanic butte of Badacsony Hill can be seen dominating the horizon across the lake. At 438 meters high, it’s the highest point in the region. Vineyards girdle the hill and are characterized by small, often terraced plots with beautiful press houses and villas. The region includes other buttes and cones that were formerly volcanoes—such as Tóti, Szent György, Csobánc, Szigliget, and Gulács—creating a stunning and somewhat surreal landscape of unusually shaped lunar-like hills.
Badacsony has a special microclimate thanks to its steep, southern slopes. They are sheltered from the northerly winds, and the lake reflects light on them. The lake’s waters ensure cool breezes, preserving acidity in the grapes. The wines are otherwise full-bodied, characterful and fiery thanks to their high sugar content guaranteed by the basalt hills and the lake’s proximity. Badacsony wines generally boast plenty of minerality and a frequent saltiness thanks to the basalt bedrock which releases minerals such as potassium, magnesium, and calcium into the soils.
The sand and clay in the soils ensure that the wines are also elegant, smooth, and round. Badacsony wines are typically white and dry, but sweet wines are also made from late-harvest or shriveled grapes. Like the rest of Lake Balaton, plantings are dominated by Olaszrizling, followed by Pinot Gris (Szürkebarát).
Viticulture has flourished here since the time of the Romans. During the Middle Ages, vineyards were owned by the church, royal estates, and a noble family who built the fortified castle on Szigliget. Viticulture declined during wars with the occupying Turks in the 16th and 17th centuries as people fled the area. It rapidly recovered by the 18th century, with modern winemaking methods and newly planted vineyards making the region famous.
Many noble families had estates and press houses on the volcanic hills, creating a bucolic landscape with vineyards surrounding white-washed buildings. The region was so renowned that families travelled from the other side of the lake to work the vineyards. The wines were traditionally sold using the name of the hill, with each having its own character. Szent György Hill, at 415 meters high, produces particularly characterful wines. Like every other region in Hungary, Badacsony suffered from the forced collectivization following World War Two and the lack of demand for quality wines. It also began losing vineyards following World War One, when holiday homes began replacing vines. Badacsony Hill is now part of a national park with strict building regulations. And winemakers have come a long way in undoing the damage done by Communism.
|Country||1-3 bottles||4-6 bottles||7-12 bottles|
|Austria||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Belgium||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Bulgaria||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Croatia||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Czech Republic||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Denmark||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Estonia||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Finland||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|France||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Germany||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Greece (mainland)||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|Hungary (outside of Budapest)||2,500 HUF||3,500 HUF||4,500 HUF|
|Hungary (Budapest)||2,500 HUF||3,500 HUF||Free delivery for orders over 20,000 HUF|
|Ireland||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Italy||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Latvia||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Lithuania||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Luxembourg||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Netherlands||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Poland||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Portugal||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|Romania||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Slovakia||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Slovenia||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Spain||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|Sweden||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|