The Blessed Effect of Railways and Phylloxera - Adventures in the Subotica-Horgos Wine Region

Subotica - The license of the photo(s) is Creative Commons Mention! 3.0 governs

Subotica is a very special city, it is one of the places without a river. The Danube is far from it, the Tisza is far away, and this natural feature - the lack of a "river connection with the world" - greatly influenced the life of the city, because since there were no river routes passing through it, it was more difficult for goods and ideas to get there. Until the railway between Szeged and Subotica was built in 1869, which brought the city what nature denied it by not giving it a river. Currently, the reconstruction of the Szabadka-Szeged railway line to a speed of 120 km/h is underway, for which the planning documentation was prepared in partnership by the Vojvodina Autonomous Regional Government and DKMT Nonprofit Közhasznú Kft. with the support of the Interreg-IPA Hungary-Serbia Cross-Border Cooperation Program. Also using this source, the above-mentioned partnership prepared the licensed plans of the Szabadka-Bácsalmás-Baja railway line, as well as the settlement plans of the settlements affected by the development, within the framework of the Dream Railway project. The revitalization of these railway connections can give new impetus to the city's development.

The railway at that time brought the golden age of Subotica, which lasted for a short fifty years, but it was a fifty year that entered the history of Hungarian literature, architecture and winemaking in large letters. In the XIX. at the end of the twentieth century. At the dawn of the XNUMXth century, Art Nouveau conquered the city and resulted in beautiful buildings. An outstanding Art Nouveau work is the town hall of Subotica, which is worth seeing not only from the outside, but also from the inside if possible, as well as the synagogue of Subotica. 

The winery also really conquered the countryside in the “golden age”, after the Kárász family sold some of their estates in 1897, which were bought by Béla Ormódy, who started planting vineyards with the help of Heinrich Heinrich József, a winery-teacher from Kiskunfélegyháza. By this time we were past the best of the European phylloxera plague, the most important lesson of which was that grapes planted in sandy soils were less exposed to the pest, so the areas around Subotica almost offered themselves to expand the winery. The bold business still has a living impact as the area has started to be populated thanks to parcelling and viticulture.

With this, we have explained why it is worth visiting the Štábka-Horgos wine region. The wineries here - Zvonko Bogdan Winery, Borkastély, Čuvardić Winery, as well as Tonković, Maurer and DiBonis Wineries, are all close enough to take a trip back in time between wine tastings. In addition to Kövidinka and Kadarka, which are considered local specialties, you can also find chardonnay, riesling, cabernet, sauvignon and merlot in the Hómhát winery in the Subotica area. Every winery has its own story, even the young DiBonis winery, which made a name for itself by producing pálinka, which is increasingly popular in the area, and these are served with girice (a long, small type of anchovy), which is popular in Croatia, but also in Belgrade.

Zvonko Bogdan Winery also goes somewhat beyond winery, as the Palic winery is named after the authentic and emblematic representative of the Bunyevacs, who wrote and performed songs typical of petty bourgeois culture in the language of the Bunyevacs. These include one of the compositions entitled ‘Ej, salaši na severu Bačke’, accompanied by tambura music ( The names of some of the wines also refer to this song culture, such as “8 tamburaša” or “Četiri konja debela” (Four fat horses), both named after the title of a song by Zvonko Bodan, the first couple in love. he is drinking wine while eight tambourine musicians from St. Petersburg play to them.

The oenology of Oszkár Maurer can also be an experience, as the vineyard is “hoeed” in the classic way, by hand or with the help of horses, and the wine is also matured naturally, with the help of wild yeast, ie by natural fermentation. Wine tasting requires an appointment, before and after you can visit Palic, and Lake Palic, which was a popular spa town at the beginning of the last century, has left us an invaluable architectural legacy with spectacular treasures such as the Art Nouveau Great Terrace and the Zsolnay Vase.  

The southern range of the Szabadka-Horgos wine region on Regőce (Riđica) is located, there are thirty-seven hectares under vineyards in the village, about 40 families are engaged in winemaking in the village itself. If you want to visit Regőce, head towards Zombor (Sombor), on the right and left of the road there are Bunyevács, or villages inhabited by Bunyevács, for example Tavankút (Donji Tavankut) and Györgyén (in Đurđin). The traditions of winemaking in Regőce also go back several centuries, according to a newspaper report dated July 1862, 6, the grapes ripened early in that region even then due to the strong sun, because ripe grapes were found on a small red bunched stem as early as June 28. They still grow red and black grapes, the most common of which are Prokupac, Merlot and Kékfrankos, while whites include Riesling, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. The winemakers of Regőce are now working to start wine tourism in their area as well.

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Horgos (Horgoš) - The license of the photo(s) is Creative Commons Name it! 3.0 governs

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