Zita (Zizi) was born in Veszprém and grew up in Balatonfüred. As a young woman, she lived and worked in Germany and Austria. Later she lived in Canada for 11 years. In addition to Hungarian, she is fluent in both German and English. David was born in London, grew up in Zimbabwe and lived for
33 years in Canada. In 2007, when David retired, we moved to live permanently in the village of Lovas, beside beautiful Lake Balaton.

Zizi attended wine school in Balatonfüred in 2007 and graduated in May 2008. We started making white wine in 2008 at the cellar of friends in Lovas, learning from them and learning also by doing.
We spent 5 years working with our good friends before we started making wine on our own. Pipacs és Pillangó Pince was formed in 2012 when we decided that we would like to make red wine because we believe that the Balaton wine region is also suited to the production of high quality red wines. We bought a small piece of land, cleared it completely and started from scratch. We planted our Cabernet Franc grapes in the early summer of 2013 and our Merlot grapes were planted in the autumn of that same year. While our grape vines were gathering their strength, we decided to purchase some Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes and begin learning to make red wine. In all, we spent three years (2013 to 2015) “learning by doing” in order to feel comfortable working with red grapes and confident that we could move on to he next stage of making red wine. It was a very different process than we had learned by working with white wine. We had to do a significant amount of research, reading of books and talking with red wine makers. We had a lot to learn and only three years to get ourselves ready.

In 2016, when our vines were just 3 years old, we had the first partial harvest from our own vineyard. This was a year earlier than we had expected and it caught us by surprise, a very welcome surprise. It was an exciting moment for us. As it turned out, 2016 was a “baptism by fire”. The 2016 season was dominated by a single extreme weather event. On July 13th a fierce hail storm tore along the north shore of Lake Balaton. Some wine makers lost all their grapes and most of us lost some. In our vineyard we estimated that 40% of the grapes were seriously damaged. Wine maker’s lesson number one – during the growing season, Mother Nature is in charge! Today, we make red, rosé and white wine - seven different wines in all.


Our Red Wines

Since that first partial harvest in 2016, we have seen three years of full production (2017 to 2019) and we are now working on our 2020 vintage. We have settled into a pattern of making four wines from our own red grapes – Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Pillangó Cuvée from a combination of the two grape varieties. In addition, we make Pipacs Rozé from whichever grape variety has the best yield. Having worked with them for seven years now, we believe that Cabernet Franc and Merlot grapes are ideally suited to the climate and soil conditions of this wine region. Given that Mother Nature is in charge, each wine season presents different challenges. As new wine-makers, we have to be prepared to meet these seasonal challenges and be open to learning something new every year.
This certainly keeps us on our toes!

One of the key differences about working with red wines is that they tend to have a much longer life. Not only do they mature while in the barrel but they also continue to mature and improve for several years after they are bottled. The extent to which red wines change during this maturation process is amazing; it is one of the wonders of wine making. It is a two to three year process to create a delightful red wine, with the wine-maker taking over from Mother Nature after the grapes are harvested. That intimate and intense involvement with the wines as they develop turns the hard work of wine making into a rewarding pleasure.

Cabernet Franc is our premium wine; it is a subtle red wine with a depth of aroma and a slightly spicy taste that make it ideal for drinking with a meal of meat or even firm flavoured fish. Cabernet Franc will not let you down.

Merlot is a full-bodied wine whose fruitiness explodes in your mouth and whose pleasing after taste lingers for a long time on your taste buds, especially if you swill it around in your mouth before swallowing. It is a wine for all occasions, to be treasured with one of your favourite meals.

The combination of these two classic Bordeaux grape varieties, that we have named Pillangó Cuvée, is bold tasting wine that is ideal for summer sipping with snack food, or for drinking with a main course of chicken or pork. This wine generally has a long bottle-life and will continue to thrill your palate for years to come.

From our red grapes, we also make an easy-drinking Pipacs Rozé which is designed to be a flavourful aperitif that pleases and refreshes your palate, while you relax or chat with your friends, as the late afternoon sun approaches the horizon.


Our White Wines

In addition to our red wines, we make three white wines from grapes we purchase from growers in the Balaton wine region – Olaszrizling, Irsai Olivér and also Orio Cuvée that is made from a combination of those two wines. We selected those two white grapes because they are so typical of the north shore of Lake Balaton.

Olaszrizling (literally translated means Italian Riesling) is the staple white wine variety in the Balatonfüred-Csopak Wine Region of which Lovas is part. Although the origins of this grape variety are not clear, it is likely that it came to Central Europe with the ancient Romans (about two thousand years ago) and it has truly found a perfect home on the north shore of Lake Balaton. Its reliability and flexibility make it consistently the most popular wine variety in this region. Olaszrizling is a dry white wine with a fruity after-taste that will stimulate your taste-buds. It is delicious when served as an aperitif with light snacks but it is also robust enough to accompany almost any type of food, from fish to chicken and pork, whether served grilled, fried or baked and whether breaded or served with a creamy sauce. You cannot go wrong with this delightful wine; it is indeed a wine for all occasions.

We absolutely love the outstanding fruitiness of Irsai Olivér, which is a uniquely Hungarian grape that has a close association with Lake Balaton. This splendidly fruity wine has a pleasant dryness that keeps you coming back for more. This is a wine that should be served cold and consumed when it is young. It is worth noting that the fruitiness of Irsai Olivér makes it an ideal partner with spicy foods – the fruitiness will not be overwhelmed by the spices. Try a glass of our Irsai Olivér; you will not regret it.

We have also created a cuvee from Olaszrizling and Irsai Olivér that we believe preserves the best of both worlds –retaining the fruitiness of the Irsai while still permitting the dryness and versatility of the Rizling. We call it Orio Cuvée and we are very proud of our creation.

 

COME AND VISIT US:

Although we have been making wines since 2008, Pipacs és Pillangó Pince is relative a new-comer to the wine-making business. While we are, and will remain, a small boutique winery with a limited selection of seven wines, we take great care with our wine-making process and we are very proud of the quality of the wines we produce.

You are welcome to come and taste our wines. Just give us a call in advance at +36 20 275 5697 to ensure that we will be here to welcome you.

 

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