Sabar Borbély Bács-hegy Olaszrizling

2 Olaszrizling wines from Bács mountain

Do you know the difference between a mountain and a hill? Well, it is not the height… Bács mountain in Badacsony wine region has a unique terroir, thus the resulting wines give unforgettable experience. Clay soil on basalt base, wines with high magnesium content.

Hill or mountain?

As I wrote above, it is not the height that makes the difference. The small Gellért, an iconic sight of Budapest is definitely a mountain, even though it is only 235 metres high – not a Mount Everest. The definition is a mountain: a natural elevation of the earth surface rising more or less abruptly from the surrounding level and attaining an altitude which, relatively to the adjacent elevation, is impressive or notable (Oxford Dictionary). Thus notable elevation is the key in case of Gellért, however, Bács mountain does not seem to be remarkably elevated. Then the definition goes on Whether a landform is called a mountain may depend on local usage. So we have the answer. Bács is a “hegy” in the locals’ conversation, thus the verdict is: it is a mountain, in spite of its mere 162 metres “height”. There is a lovely chapel on top where Catholic masses are held twice a year.

Bács mountain Badacsony

Sabar Single Vineyard Bács-hegy Olaszrizing 2020

Olaszrizling is the most widespread variety of Balaton region, we can find great examples of this versatile white variety in every winery. Sabar (an estate named after Sabar, another mountain / hill) made this single vineyard Olaszrizling for the first time from Bács-hegy. “Wet stone, roasted nuts, a touch of vanilla. A wine that slows time down. Basalt origin appears in the foreground with some grilled pear and blood orange.” Only 2000 bottles are made, retail price is under 10 euros.

The best place to taste is the spectacular Sabar estate with breathtaking view (see the photo below) of all the vineyards of the estate. Warning: spontaneous, serious parties can happen any day on the terrace of the cellar…

More about Sabar Wine House


Borbély Single Vineyard Bács-hegy Olasz rizling 2016

Tamás Borbély has just received his title Winemaker of the Year! The award was given at the end of last year, but due to pandemic restrictions the official award giving took place only in the summer. Tamás and his family is a passionate lover of Olaszrizling variety, we even dubbed Tamás Mr Olaszrizling in an earlier article of ours. The Borbély family vinifies Olaszrizling from Bács-hegy in a traditional way, ageing it in new, large barrel for 6 months. The result is a complex, great wine typical bitter almond notes in the aftertaste. Apart from the characteristics of the variety, ripened fruit and some subtle oaky tones in the background can be discovered both on the nose and the palate. The unique character of the terroir is also reflected in this complex wine.” (Olaszrizling is spelled in the archaic way in the name of the wine.)

The place to taste is at Borbély estate, they have a lovely, rustic, welcoming cellar and a guest house as well. On 9 August a jazz event awaits guests to celebrate the Winemaker of the Year.

More about Borbély Family Winery

Tamás Borbély (Photo by Zsolt Szigetváry)

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