Csongrád wine region, where the sunshine is the lord
Each wine region is stunning in its own way, but the sunny Csongrád wine region is particularly beautiful. Not only is the landscape stunning, but so many quality wines are made here and the production of grapes is so high that in 1986 Csongrád earned the title of International City of Grapes and Wine. We show why this crop area is so unique.
The wine made in the Csongrád wine region was already known before the Turkish rule. For centuries, this area, together with the smaller Hajós-Baja in the west and the huge Kunság in the north-west, has been the engine of Hungarian wineries, from which millions of liters of wine are transported across the Danube to Germany and Austria every year. These three regions fill the plain between the two dominant rivers of Hungary, the Danube and the Tisza.
The past of the Csongrád wine region
In the Csongrád wine region of the Southern Great Plain, covering 2800 hectares, viticulture has been going on for many centuries, more precisely, it started in the Middle Ages. Some sources date the appearance of viticulture even earlier, at the time of the conquest. In the Árpádian era IV. King Bela delighted one of the monastic orders of the Catholic Church, the order of the canons of Premontre, with vineyards, which the monks apparently welcomed, as they did not despise wine. The founding deed of the Benedictine abbey of Garamszentbenedek, made in the early 1700s, also mentions viticulture in the fields on the border of Csongrád. In the 18th century, due to the quicksand, Maria Theresa decreed that the people living here should plant grapes to bind quicksand.
Special lowland climate
The total production area of the Csongrád wine region is 14000 hectares. 8500 hectares fall into the second and 3000 first class. The wine-producing settlements belong to four districts, Csongrád, Kistelek, Pusztamérges and Mórahalom. The Csongrád wine region is warmer in summer than in other Hungarian wine regions, and much colder in winter, and frosts are common. Unfortunately, the latter can also damage the vineyard. Its unique climate is due to its geographical location. The above-average number of hours of sunshine naturally has a positive effect on grape production and the quality of the grapes, which has a significantly higher sugar content compared to other grapes. The acids of the region’s wines are softer compared to those produced from those grown in the mountains.
Lots of excellent grape varieties, a wide variety of soils
The Csongrád wine region is located on the right bank of the river Tisza and many grape varieties are grown here. These include blue grapes (blue franc, kadarka, cabernet, zweigelt, red slank), green Veltelin, Rhine and Italian Riesling, Kunleány, Chardonnay, Kövinka, and a hybrid grape variety, Zalagyöne. Like the grape varieties grown here, the fields are diverse. From the black soils of Tisza origin to acidic sandy soils, casting sludge and calcareous sands, to sandy loam and calcareous sediments mixed with sediment, a wide range of arable land is considered. A positive feature of sandy soils is that although they are less abundant in nutrients and humus, they warm up in a short time. The rays of the sun are reflected more strongly, which makes it easier for the grapes to ripen. One more thing facilitates this: although the area is poor in rainfall, the groundwater is already 3 to 6 meters deep, so the roots of the vines are able to absorb it. Their quartz content is high, which makes them resistant to the grape root cause of grape destruction.
What's worth seeing?
Csongrád is an amazingly diverse wine region in Hungary, with many attractions. The natural landscapes of the region provide a perfect location for hiking enthusiasts who can admire the local flora and fauna. The spa in Csongrád and the National Historical Memorial Park in Ópusztaszer offer pleasant relaxation.
The natural beauties and sights are further colored by the magnificent estuary of the Hármas-Körös (Körös-throat) and, of course, let's not forget about Szentes, which is outstandingly diverse in terms of monuments and sights on the left bank of the Tisza:
- Between 1883 and 1950, the József Kosta Museum in the building of the former County Hall operated as the seat of Csongrád County.
- The Szentesi Archives of the Csongrád County Archives is one of the few archives in the country that still operates where it was born, within the walls of its former county hall on Szentes main square, Kossuth Square.
- Here is the monument to Sosai Masutatsu Oyama, the creator of Kyokushin karate, the Shinto Gate, a unique structure in the world, as the world organization has not allowed the construction of such a monument anywhere else in Japan.
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