Grapes fresh from the vine

2018.08.16

An opportunity offered to me during the village festival: Helping with the Zengő-grape harvest.

Vineyard in the morning sunlight.
Vineyard in the morning sunlight.

An unexpected offer

After officially introducing myself to the village on saturday an elderly man asked me if I would be interested in helping with the grape harvest in his parcel of a nearby vineyard - because the Zengő-grapes are ripe and he and a few other inhabitants harvest them together every year.

That was an opportunity I couldn't possibly miss.


(My) One day in the Vineyard

The vineyard where we harvest the grapes is a 5-10 minutes car ride from my apartment, at the lower end of a small hill, belonging to a village, Napad, which has been home to danube swabians till the Second World War.

The whole hillside is seperated in parcels, all about one hectare in size, but a lot longer than wide. One parcel consists of five rows of vines, every row is about 200-300 metres long.

Before starting the harvest we have breakfast together - freshly baked bread, paprika, tomatoes, kolbász and bacon, for those who want also Palinka. We start our work shortly after seven, while the sun slowly begins to rise over the hill.

There are especially many grapes because of the early start of summer and we have to get more boxes in between to store all these grapes.

Just when it's getting too warm to continue working we finish the harvest. The boxes are loaded onto a small truck that brings them to the Pincer (wine cellar).

With that the work of us helpers is done - we eat lunch together, Gulyás (Gulasch) and Lángos (Langosch), drink wine from the year before and talk about all sorts of things.

As a small Thank You for our help all of us get a bottle of red wine from the Hungarian Csóka-grape - self-made, of course.

Let's see if I can help with the Riesling-harvest in September, too.