Eger is a town in Hungary in the province of Heves, about 110 km east of Budapest, a great place to visit for couple of days or if you do not have time , it can be a day trip from the Budapest.
It is the place we’re the great Saint King Stephen founded a bishopric, but the splendor of the city was around the XIV and XVI centuries, time when wine became the main activity . YES…. I went there for this reason, the great Hungarian Bikaver.
One morning I woke up and with my husband Giuseppe we got in the car with in our mind to go to the Balaton Lake , but ones in the car we looked at each other and ….. as very often it happens, we changed mind . We decided to go to Eger instead. We could not had decided better!
Few day before our day in the winery of Eger, during my search in internet I was fascinated by the legend about the name of the wine Bikaver. Great things come out always from difficult time and this wine is not an exception . Egri Bikavér ( bull’s blood of Eger) is a red strong wine, you have to have a good Hungarian meal if you want to drink this wine or the first glas will knock you down . The mistery of this wine is in its legend, all starts with the invasion of Suleiman the Magnificent on 1552. The city was under siege by the Turks and the Hungarian soldiers needed an extra help, so they were served delicious food with lots of red good wine. The Turks started saying that mixed with the red wine there was bull’s blood so it could be explained why the resistance of the town and so they decided to give up.
So today due to the Turks and the strength of the Hungarian we can enjoy such a legendary wine.
Lots of wineries give you the opportunity to taste this wine , you can stroll in the valley of the beautiful women where lots of cellars make you drink the local production of wine . It is also possible to do the same thing in town , great wine shops are almost at every corner.
As we arrived it was too early for wine …. 9:30 it is time for breakfast. So we stroll up to the main square ( Dobó squre ) , such a clean place , I felt like I was in a movie set, in the middle of the square there is a statue of captain István Dobó, little cafes and restaurants surround the square, flowers are the elegant frames of the city and of course the Church of St. Anthony of Padua. We looked around and then we were attracted by this cafe , Depresso, this is the way I felt if I do not have my breakfast. In Italian depresso means depres .I forgot to tell you that Hungarian are very good for coffee , the Turks teach! We enjoy our cold cappuccino ,suggested by the sweet waiter, with a splash of lavander taste ….. sounded strange but you got to try other wise traveling it is not fun. The nice waiter also suggest to elevate our simple croissant with their home made marmalade.
Our body now had energy and we could walk and visit the city. We run to the archdiocesan library of Eger , because it closed at lunch time . Even if up to now I spoke only about food and wine the other reason why I travel is art and culture. Walking inside the library I felt like one of the students of the great centuries who could go in it and read those books. Surrounded by a 360 degrees wood book cases from floor to cealing , my eyes reached the volt of the room and that is why you go there . The fresco by the Viennese painter, János Lukács Kracker, painted in 1778 it represents the Tridentine Council. The two books in the painting are the Holy Scripture and the Summa Theologica by St. Thomas of Aquino, books placed on the tables of the council participants, they determinates the spirit of the Council. The fresco is painted in the way you feel like you are part of the Council.
It was time for lunch….. so walking I found this great restaurant Macok where food it was really delicious.