Monday, September 28, 2009

Etyek Wine & Food Festival

On Saturday we travelled just outside of Budapest to a small town called Etyek. The town is cute and has become a popular place to live. The town lies in one of Hungary's popular wine regions--Etyek-Buda wine region.

With wine glass in hand, we visited the wine cellars and sampled their wine. It was a great day!

The wines gods were looking down on us.

Hundreds of people were at this festival. Here is one of the many "cellar sites" located throughout the town. The entire town was actually closed to traffic.

One of the many wine cellars! Inside the cellars was a cool relief.
The weather here is still rather warm in the sun.

Beautiful sunny day!

Cellars like these dotted the entire town. Some were rugged while others were resplendent with large dinning areas and modern conditions for storing.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Must Making

If you read the title of this posting from an English speaking point of view, you may wonder, "Must be making what?" If you read it from an Estonian point of view, you may ask, "Mis must 'making' on?" or "What is black or dirty making?" For the bilingual Hungarian, however, "must making" means it is time to harvest grapes and make fresh fruit juice.

As many of you know, we rent part of a house from a nice Hungarian family. On Saturday, the family gathered for their annual grape harvest. The grapes came from their own backyard. European "backyards" are often a bounty of fruits and vegetables. We were kindly invited to take part.

Ironically, we were not home but in a cute nearby town, Etyek, just outside of Budapest at a food and wine festival. We did get to enjoy some nice white wines especially from one of our favorite wineries, Nyakas, which we endearingly call the "horse wine." We'll post some photos soon.

Below are photos of how the family made the delicious freshly squeezed grape juice (we got a sample!). No alcohol in this must; however, you can add fermentation to this process and produce wine. We guess that Diane's Grandpa adds fermentation when he harvests his grapes and fruit in Kentucky. Grandpa's wine tastes similar to the Hungarian "must."

The grapes! Where it all begins.

After picking the grapes, they are then crushed in the mill.
Everyone gets involved!

The crushed grapes are then put into a press.

Here you can see Zoltán pressing the crushed grapes. As you press the grapes,
the juice begins to flow. Instant gratification!

The press fills with pomace.

Ah! The grape juice. It is a deliciously sweet grape juice.
You can really taste how fresh it is.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

What costume should we wear?

We will be at a Halloween party next month. We really haven't gone to many costume parties in the past.

What should we dress-up as? Any ideas?

p.s. Our selection of costumes, make-up, etc. is a bit limited here in Budapest compared to the states.

Monday, September 21, 2009

last nights visitor

We had a pretty good weekend. We relaxed, napped and just hung out. Sunday we went to the garden store and bought some new plants that will be good for the colder months. Last night I went out to the patio to breath in some fresh air and look at our new plants and this little guy was looking up at me.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

What do you think this is?

We need your help.

Much like our dilemma with our washing machine last year, we have another "european device" question.

Many of you know that toilets in Europe have a 2-button flushing system such as the one pictured below. It is a practical device that saves water.

Steven believes the the small button is for flushing pee and the larger button for...well you know. Diane simply says the buttons are an on/off switch giving you full control over how much water you need to get the job done.

What do you think?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

X-Post - Diane says it best!

Diane blogged recently about our fun time in Belgium!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

In Bruges - Friends, Food and Fun

Hello from Belgium! Taking in all the Belgium specialties....

Diane and Steven
Eva and Dave
Belgium Beer
Belgium Waffles
Belgium Chocolates
Mussels: Provence Style

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


On this ninth day of the ninth month of the thousand and ninth year, we thought it auspicious to share two other important dates…

Today (Wednesday): 18 years since Diane and Steven first met.

Thursday: We celebrate our 1-year anniversary living in Budapest.

Monday, September 7, 2009

More photos from Croatia

We uploaded all of our photos from our trip to our flicker page. Click on the photos on the left to view our flicker page. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

kissed by the sun and salt in our hair

We are back from Croatia! We had a great time! It was too short. Why do vacations always seem to short?
The photos below was taken at dinner.
There was a horrible storm that hit and it was pouring
down rain when we left. The night was cool but the
days were warm and wonderful!
Our journey started in a town called Moscenicka Draga. A great family friendly seaside town. We rented a room from a very sweet lady. We had an amazing balcony that overlooked huge hills and the sea in the distance. We were only about a 5-10 minute walk from the beach!

Day two our friends Andi and Ed decided to walk 12 km (about 7 miles) to the next town called Volosko. Steven and I decided to drive Ed's car to the town and wait for them. We were more interested in laying by the sea and swimming:) This was by far Steve and my favorite place. The town is a fishing town and the tourists were minimal. We had a fantastic time and definitely will go back to spend more time in this town!

On a side note...I don't think we have ever eaten so much calamari in two days! Our cholesterol must be through the roof!
Days 3-5 we spent in Zagred, the capital and largest city in Croatia. We have been to Zagreb before, in 2003. It has changed very much since then. We had a great time relaxing, shopping, visiting museums and cemeteries.

The only downer during the whole trip was a cold that hit me once we arrived in Zagreb. I spent a day in bed sleeping, Fortunately, the next day was feeling a lot better.

Zagreb Highlights:
  • We are huge fans of the The Croatian Museum of Naive Art. The museum is small and full of artwork from self taught artists.
  • Mirogoj Cemetery A beautiful cemetery just outside the city. We had a peaceful walk and lite a candel for Mom.
A place to light a candle and remember loved ones
(we lite a candle for mom)You can also check out my my blog where i talk a bit more about the details of what we saw...