"We are not grumpy, we are only weird guys at first glance ”
Kősziklás Borászat, Neszmély
We are in Dunaszentmiklós, on the northern edge of the Gerecse hills, at the Kösziklás vineyard. Dunaszentmiklós is a beautifully-situated, 400-strong small village full of wine cellars overlooking the Danube that’s towards the north and west, surrounded by forest and limestone vineyards. And of course, rock-hard, diligent Swabians.
Szabolcs Emmer: Ákos and I are cousins, grandma Emmer is the common point. We could say that even our ancestors were dealing with wine. Still, with due respect, we did taste those wines, and for that reason we’d rather call ourselves first-generation winemakers. Ákos became a winemaker from being a viticulturist and I became a viticulturist from being a winemaker. So, now he’s in charge of the cellar, and I’m dealing with our 40 hectares of vineyards on these high plateaus.
Ákos Béger: There aren’t many things I agree with Szabolcs about, but in one thing we do – our favourite variety is Sauvignon Blanc. I love it so much that I worked for a season in New Zealand just because of this variety. I wanted to get to know the style, I wanted to make a wine that they make. What’s necessary for it? A cool location, dense calcareous soil, ripe grapes, temperature-controlled fermentation and low intervention. At least that’s how I see it now.
Szabolcs: We don’t cut the leaves, we wait for the bunches to ripen slowly in the shade, gradually and perfectly, and almost let them over-ripen. A wine starts at a 12% ABV at our winery, with 13% we feel fairly okay.
Ákos: We work at a height of 300 metres above sea level, on windy, calcareous soil with French grafts. We pay attention to detail in every form of work. We work simply, from very ripe and perfectly healthy grapes. For me, this guarantees that we have a really exciting but polarising green wine. It’s good if it’s fresh and has nettle and rocket notes.