Cover pic: The vines overlook the Danube (source: the winery's Facebook page)

This is especially true for the winemakers of the Pohronský, or Garam-mente, region, although it has to be said that everyone seems to be peeking out from under the mantle of Zsolt Sütő, Tibor Melecsky and the Kasnyík brothers. However, it is also true that names like Matus Vdovjak from the Tokaj wine region or Magula and Slobodné Vinárstvo from the Small Carpathians, and more recently Frigyes Bott and, of course, Attila Geönczeöl, have now caught up with them. The Zláty Roh (meaning Golden Horn) estate from Devín linked to the name of Filip Nagy fits into this grouping.

The Danube, the Morava and the castle of Děvín, with Hainburg and Austria in the background. (source:

Yes indeed, from that Devín! As the Hungarian poet Endre Ady wrote: „May I break into Dévény / With new songs for new times?” Filip mailed me the wines, accompanied with a kind invitation, which I will take him up on as soon as possible. After all, I have been to the castle near Devín, in fact I’ve paddled under it along the Danube, but I have not yet seen the local vineyards, although old engravings and maps prove wine production is not a new phenomenon around here.

The old engraving shows the vineyards above the castle

Just like on the map of the first Habsburg Military Survey of 1763-1787

This engraving from 1750 shows the vineyards on the hills sloping down to Morava river

As for the Zlatý Roh project, the old vineyard was cleared in 2014 and the land prepared for planting; three hectares were planted in 2016. ZGrüner Veltliner, Pinot Noir, Riesling, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon are all cultivated on the hillside partly overlooking the Danube. The estate has been organic from the beginning and is now certified, while it has also worked biodynamically since 2017. There is also a possibility that they may further expand within their 12-hectare estate.

From the winery terrace you can see the Danube and the castle (source: winery's Facebook page)

The vineyard is clearly visible in the old coloured lithograph (source here)

The Morava river mouth below Děvín. The left bank is Austria, the right bank Slovakia, with the vineyard in the background. (source:

Their vines are located in the Goldeck and Purweg vineyards, with a planting density of 5,800 per hectare. The winery uses no cultivated yeast, only spontaneous fermentation, no filtration and only minimal sulphite additions. As for the wines, they are very promising for a start-up project!

Děvín around 1850

Zlatý Roh Goldeck Veltlínske Zelené 2019 (12.7%) I 86 points

Medium gold colour, slightly opaque, making the whole experience a little like drinking tea. Aromas of mandarin, ripe apple and green apple, fresh pine buds and white pepper. Medium-bodied on the palate with lively acidity and ripe tannins, clearly from the grape skins, pollen and Mediterranean citrus. The finish is bone dry and dominated by acidity and citrus fruit.

Photo: Daniel Ercsey

Hofbauer, János - Dévény Castle, c. 1830 (source: Hungarian National Gallery)

Zlatý Roh Goldeck Purweg Blanc 2019 (12.9%) I 89 points

Medium gold colour. The nose is initially beautifully fruity with notes of pear, peach and melon, with some pineapple and apple in the background. Medium-bodied on the palate with soft acidity and elegant structure, the wine is dominated by ripe fruit. Pear and a hint of bitterness on the finish, which, while detracting from its elegance, keeps the wine fresh.

Photo: Daniel Ercsey

Old section showing the castle from the Morava river

Under the terraces the Danube landscape is covered in fog (source: winery's Facebook page)

Zlatý Roh Purweg Riesling 2019 (13.4%) I 88 points

Medium gold colour. The nose is initially a little restrained, with perhaps only a little hay, but as it opens, the pear notes typical of Riesling come to the fore, accompanied by white flowers and a touch of pollen. Medium-bodied on the palate with bright acidity and flavours of peach, pear, mango and nutmeg. Medium finish.

Photo: Daniel Ercsey

The side-wheel steamship Wien on the Danube, in the background the castle of Děvín and the Millennium Monument in 1919 (source: Fortepan / Tibor Erky-Nagy)

Zlatý Roh PetNat 2020 Rosé I 86 points

Intense reddish raspberry cordial colour with explosive fruity aromas of raspberry and strawberry. Medium-bodied on the palate with lovely acidity and intense mousse but perhaps still slightly harsh bubbles. Flavours of cherry and redcurrant, the nose “promised more”, instead there is some bitterness and a slightly yeasty character, which is interesting, but the overall impression is rather mismatched.

Zlatý Roh Goldeck Pinot Noir 2019 (13.7%) I 87 points

Pale ruby colour with purple reflexes. Intense cherry and sour cherry character complemented by a hint of redcurrant. Lighter than average on the palate with elegant acidity, rather characteristic of Pinot with soft tannins and sweet spice along with lovely fruit, predominantly sour cherry and raspberry. There’s something a little wild about it, but it’s heading the right way. Although it could do with a little tweaking for elegance’s sake.

Photo: Daniel Ercsey

Zlatý Roh Purweg Merlot-Cabernet 2019 (14.3%) I 87 points

Deep purple colour, obviously still very young, as indicated by the purple reflexes. Aromas of black berries, a hint of pepper and graphite and a touch of damson and black cherry. Medium to full-bodied with lively but soft acidity and silky tannins. It has a cool, northerly character with lovely fruit on the palate and a touch of bell pepper, which unfortunately detracts from its elegance. Medium finish.

Děvín castle and the Danube from the air (source: