Fun facts about the bloodiest bird in the world

Did you know that the largest bird statue of Europe can be found in Hungary? It was erected near the town of Tatabánya, less then an hour’s drive from Budapest. And it was not erected because Hungarians are so much fond of ornitology… This bird is a „turul”, a mythological bird of prey, and its wingspan is as long as 15 metres.

The legends of the ancient ’magyars’

According to a legend, „the mythic bird, the Turul, is the original bird of the original Hungarians, the Magyars, who migrated out of the plains of Central Asia. The legend says that in 896 AD, the bird dropped its sword in what is now modern day Budapest, indicating to the Magyars that the area was to be their homeland.”According to another legend, this falcon-like bird protected Álmos, one of the leaders of ancient Hungarians in his mother’s dream. The mother, Emese was pregnant when she was dreaming about the fierce bird, who attacked an eagle in the protection of the baby. There are at least 195 turul statues in Hungary, and there are some more in the neighbouring countries, there is one even in Austria (48 in Romania, 8 in Slovakia, 7 in Serbia, 5 in Ukraine).

Counter Terrorist Turul

Nowadays turul is still used as a symbol in many places. The Turul is used as in the design of coats of arms of the Hungarian Army, the Counter Terrorism Centre and the Office of National Security.With so much fire force turul is definitely the strongest and most fearful bird of the world! Turul is a symbol of patriotism, and we are aware that Hungarian patriotism does not have a good press these days (and indeed the far right nationalism exists) but thank god there is a good kind of patriotism, which is simply the love and respect of our history and past including the legend of the turul.

The best of all turuls

The statue is nice, you can see it from the window of the car or the train passing Tatabánya, but there is a much better turul: a wine! Turul is red blend made by Vesztergombi Cellar in Szekszárd wine region. „This blend has been made of Cabernet Franc and Merlot since the first vintage, though at the beginning the proportion was inverse. We decided to change the ratio of the varieties in 1997, and it was the year when we named the blend Turul. The heavier, sometimes harsh style of Cabernet Franc is perfectly balanced by the softness and gentleness of Merlot.” The Vesztergombi family was among the first ones to use barrique for maturation, and this wine was matured in barrique as well for 12 months. The oak notes are in perfect balance with the fruitiness of the wine and it is acknowledged for example by the renowned German wine contest: the 2015 vintage won gold medal at Mundus Vini.

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