REFLECTION ON THE “GREAT WINE”
‘The Great’ wine is a natural wonder, an emotional creation! The Winemaker must be exceptionally committed to firstly imagine, the dream of ‘The Great Wine’ and then, with great faith and prudence prepare for the creation of ‘The Great Wine’.
The Winemaker, with his know-how and by planting the best quality grapevine, creates the vineyard with excellent soil, plenty of sunlight, and wonderful microclimate for grape cultivation.
The Winemaker patiently waits for the grape to reach its honourable age and does not pressure it, but protects it from all pests and sickness until it reaches maturity.
The Winemaker is patiently waiting for the grape to mature to its full potential based on its characteristics. He accepts the painful fact that the best ingredient for ‘The Great Wine’ is produced only in exceptional and infrequent vintages, with appropriate treatment, weather, and microclimate conditions.
If we are blessed and these conditions are given, the Winemaker, after a timely, prompt and gentle treatment of the grapes, removes the bunch rot that destroys the fermentation and puts only professionally sulphurated pure must into a stainless steel or wooden barrels. The barrels are finally placed in the best environment and temperature for that varietal.
The Winemaker, risking his own life, takes one big breath and rushes into the carbon dioxide-filled cellar to inspect the development of the wine every two to three days.
The big moment will come when the Winemaker will have to decide on the time of extraction. Doing this too early or too late can prevent developing ‘The Great Wine’.
Suppose that due to the frequent wine tasting of the Winemaker, the perfect time of the first extraction is identified, then he has to decide on the degree of ‘noise’ of the extraction, knowing that a noisy extraction results in loss of aroma and flavour.
Let’s also suppose that this is again, due to the Winemaker’s know-how, executed perfectly so he can rightly expect the arrival of ‘The Great Wine’.
After the harvest, the Winemaker with regular tasting is already guessing that the ‘The Great Wine’ is developing. This creates an endless state of excitement making him obsessed, taking every opportunity to taste the ‘The Great Wine’, but he needs to be careful not to run out of it as well as not to make many aware of the existence of the wine.
Never ask the Winemaker if he has a ‘Great Wine’ – he won’t admit to it. Especially not to people with a lack of respect and appreciation for wine.
If you love wine and have the frame of mind and patience to taste what the Winemaker has to offer, inevitably, you will eventually taste ‘The Great Wine’. This is expected to happen when the Winemaker finds that you are not only a wine lover but you have also proven your understanding, admiration, and humbleness.
Remember, the Winemaker will not take risks, he will make sure you are worthy, only a handful of lucky individuals will be picked. When the glorious moment finally arrives, the Winemaker immediately recognizes it, changes his tone, becomes more sensitive and reveals his secret after a long introductory tale. He will ceremonially introduce you to the ‘The Great Wine’. From this moment on you will become obsessed with the ‘The Great Wine’, you will take every opportunity to get close to the ‘The Great Wine’ by repeatedly complimenting and praising the Winemaker. Meanwhile, the only thought in your mind, which you only dare to mutter softly is: If only I could get another taste of the ‘The Great Wine’.
Never believe the Winemaker saying that ‘The Great Wine’ is His creation and only He can do it. The Winemaker does his best to prove that the merit was His, and without him, the ‘The Great Wine’ would not have been possible. The Winemaker takes every opportunity to prove this, he tells his tales repeatedly up to a point where he even convinces himself although deep down he is well aware that this is untrue.
The Winemaker merely plays a role in creating the environment and endless care and patience for ‘The Great Wine’.
‘The Great Wine’ is a wonder, a divine creation that, with the power of the sirens, attracts those who are fortunate enough to come in contact with it and, when they do so, it drives its devotees into a fatal passion.
The secret of the ‘The Great Wine’ is and will be studied by many, but no one will ever be able to solve it. There are few who undeservingly feel entitled to take up this impossible venture and set up theories in the belief that they may be able to possess the secret. But it is only a deceitful mirage that will accompany them to the grave.
Sr. Csaba Szörényi’s reflection on The Great Wine, Felsőörs, Hungary, 2004
People can be divided into three groups:
- Wine Lovers – Wine Experts.
In my opinion, the biggest of all passions is the Love of Wine – Knowing the Wine. Many people object and claim many other things to be the most important. We Wine Lovers – Wine Experts know that all passion can be derived from the ‘passion for wine’ / music dance, art, gastronomy, sports / extreme sports, development, invention, sex (I’ve only added this word for the sake of my son) /. Wine takes the passion we choose to a higher level. True, ‘Wine Lovers and Wine Experts’ can also be divided into three categories: ‘Salesman Winemakers’, Hobby Winemakers / Hobby Winemaker who independently cultivates grape, creates the wine and sells the wine to his fellow ‘Wine Lover – Wine Experts’ in their vicinity. The ‘salesman winemakers’ can also be divided into two parts. Some of them always put their love and understanding of wine ahead of business considerations. These people are easy to recognize because they are always smiling, happy and liberated. Those who put business first, find it difficult to smile, but when they do, they do so in the interest of business while posing for a photo. They are usually characterized by seriousness and inaccessibility.
We Hobby Winemakers, the smiling ‘salesman winemakers’ and the Wine Lover – Wine Experts have a great advantage that the business winemakers lack, because our passion, lifestyle, success is defined and characterized by our love for wine. Because like I said, all passion can be derived from the love for wine.
- Wine Lovers – Not Wine Experts
In my opinion, these people have not yet had the opportunity to be in the company of Wine Experts to help them recognize and learn what makes and characterizes a good wine. They are under the delusion that the sweeter the wine the better, they drink Tokaji wine for their sweetness and not because of their unique value. They consume vintage wine for their commodity value and not for their specific aromas and flavours.
The Hobby Winemakers, Wine Experts are tasked with opening up the special world of wine understanding to as many Wine Lovers as possible.
- Not wine lovers, who do not understand why they don’t like wine.
These are misguided, lost people who take a lot of work to be saved. They come up with confusing theories about alcoholism, illness, vows, habits, family traditions and they even feel proud of themselves. They do not know that Wine Experts will never be alcoholics, because the love, respect, and high standard of pleasure they found in wine make this impossible.
My dear fellow Wine Experts, we cannot make the mistake of letting the not wine lovers stay mislead and live their lives without the true pleasure of wine.
It is known to us that WINE is a medicine, an enjoyment, an indispensable element of gastronomy, without which there is no real family and social life. We cannot afford to let people be led by dogmas, live unhappily, outcasted.
NO! No wine expert can take this to heart.
So my dear Wine Expert Friends let’s work, let’s make mankind happy to forget their problems, to live our lives cheerfully, confidently, recognizing the great pleasures without any politics.
Many people in the world proclaimed world peace, beloved, happiness, and look around and see where humanity got without the love of wine. True faith and responsibility are in our hands, let’s use it to make this world more beautiful.
After reading my reflection, I realised that what if other hobbyists similarly differentiated people and a passionate pumpkin producer flashed in front of my eyes. Well? More came to mind about people than about wine.
Csaba Szörényi Hobby Winemaker (Some people say he is slightly biased), Felsőörs 2010