The Hungarian House of Wines on Castle Hill provided a wonderful treat for those who like wine and have a capacity to drink fast. You paid something like $15.00 at the time and you were set free in the cellar to taste taste 60 Hungarian wines without supervision. This was so high on everyone’s “Must Do” list, when it closed years ago, I am surprised there was no funeral march with a memorial service. Hope was everlasting with the signs that stated they were eventually relocating to the Pest side of the river, though the time frame was indefinite. With that information and making it my business to keep up-to-date on businesses, I periodically, but with utmost frequency would stop in at TourInform hoping for a good news of a rebirth. Nothing new, same old, same old, no the Hungarian House of Wines has not reopened.
Interestingly, when I went to the museum this Sunday, I just happened to walk by the old House of Hungarian Wine only to be aghast that the door was open. I barreled through the door like a drunk in prohibition finding the last drop of alcohol in a Baptist Church. When I started to question the receptionist, she had to call reinforcements; she did not speak English. Strange for a place that heavily depends on tourists to have their front person be a non-English speaker.
The entire staff came to greet me. I think I was the first non-employee they have seen on the premises in months. Months, you ask? Yes, months. This new House of Hungarian Wines had re-opened supposedly in August of 2010. I am dubious about this information, because I know for a fact that I have passed by this location multiple times in the last eleven months with the explicit purpose of paying homage to a treasured tourism site, though I did not ever partake personally. Certainly most or at least some of my parting glances had to have been during normal operation hours, yet there had never been any sign of life to spark my attention for further investigation.
That be what it may, the new rendition of the wine house will certainly cause whines from those who have been privy to its former carnation. This House of Wine is much more expensive, you are kept on a short lease for tasting, and you have to choose from different prescribed plans of offerings. For what they are charging, there are many other less expensive as well as less restrictive opportunities around the city. Too bad! I wonder if they will be open by next July.