Have You ever heard how beautiful Morava (Moravia) is?
You probably know that the Czech beer is (one of) the best in the world. not many people know that Czech Republic is very competitve with wines too! In Morava (eastern part of the Czech Republic) they are proud they grow some of very good grapes and bottle some very tasty wines.
And what more — it is very cheap "down there". I remember a trip to Znojmo, town located 200kms south east from Prague, where there few famous cellars are. (Eg. "Painted Cellar" where a local artist spent 40 years making pictures on stone walls, or "Cross Cellar" — one of the largest cellars in the world). We got to village called "Satov" by coincidence and we parked our car in front of local cellar & restaurant. It was our day trip to Telc, that is one of twelve Czech Republic UNESCO inheritage with large half-gothic and half-rennaisance castle andthen we decided to prolong our trip souther to Znojmo. It was early November, beautiful day and by the time we got there, the darkness was comming. It was me, my girlfriend and my dog. I started to feel tired after long drive all the way from Prague (with the Telc we absolved maybe 250kms) so I suggested to find out whether there would be a chance to stay there over the night.
You know — Moravian people are very nice.
They welcomed us in the restaurant and offered us dinner and wine tasting. First, we ordered our dinner and before it was made some gentleman took us to the cellar just to have a quick look. Everytime I get to a place like this I hav little scared feelings. In fifteen minutes we were sitting behind the table and was eating our supper. They also made some roasted sausages for my dog, brought it in and put it on a plate on the floor in front of his nose! After finishing the dinner I asked manager of the place if he could help us with accommodation. He said "no problem" and in five or ten minutes some local lady appeared in there, we sat in my car and drove to a place few hundred meters away. Big and nice vila and -totally empty. No guests — it was after the season. She offered me stay over the night at price of 400,-(!) CZK each, no extra charge for the dog and we could choose our room — there was 6 — 7 rooms upstairs! Large living room with fireplace, bar, kitchen with all stuff!
Tasting Moravian "ice wine"
Well, I parked my car in the courtyard and we walked back to the restaurant. We were invited to the cellar and another surprise followed — by coincidence there was a group of some businessmen who came to taste wine (they wanted to be partners of the cellar) and the really best wines were ready for them to degustate. And they let us join! We got excellent wine guide who was telling us all the interesting information about those wines. I do not remember everything, but I learned a lot about wine. The guy said that Moravians grow some very best white grapes and they feel sorry they cannot compete in red wines — simply because of the power of sun — it is not as warm in Moravia as in France, let’s say, or Chille or Argentina. Believe me — I did not mind. We started with "sourer" brandes and continued slowly towards the sweet wines. And we were finishing with "ice wine". Do you know what does it mean? It has nothing common with ice tea or ice coffe wich are just cold drinks. Ice wine is expression for grapes what stay on grape-vines until they get frost. Just for few hours, then the growers start to pick it up, usually it is late in the night (3 am). The wine is sweet, but lovely. You must taste, it is not easy to describe.
After two hours we were in good mood and went to continue upstair, back to the restaurant. I bought few bottles to bring home and we went sleep. I lighted fire in the fireplace and we spent part of our night watching the flames and relaxing.
Paying bills is a pleasure in Moravia
Next morning the land lady appeared (she let us have proper sleep — she entered the house quarter to twelve). I gave the lady 1000,-crowns with a big thank you and took her card. I definetely call her and will want to visit the place again. She also gave us tip where to go — we drove few kilometres away and stoped near beautiful natural park called "Sobes". We walked passing vineyards and grabed few grapes, (which is recstricted, but noone saw us so we ate them), later we got to a wild looking area with rocks and forest. We got lost in the forest and about two hours later we finaly found our way back to my car, but my dog was not able to walk (and spent the whole way back to Prague sleeping on the rear seat).
Oh and I forgot to tell you how "expensive" our trip was. I paid that 1000,-CZK for the night. Total bill from restaurant and cellar displayed 350,- dinners, 200,-tasting (!! it’s free of charge, isn’t?) and 1100,- bottles of wine (do not forget one of them was that lovely "ice wine") = 1650,-CZK and I gave them tip and made it up to 2000,-CZK and still felt like I ought to give them more. But as I said it was not in the plan and I had to keep some money for the return to Prague. Anyway — it seems everything to be 3x cheaper in Moravia than in Prague.
Blanik hill — famous Czech hill
We made one more stop on our way home and climbed up a hill called Blanik — that is legendary national Czech plase where "Blanik Knights" have been sleeping and would be woken up when some real danger would be trying to destroy the Czech nation. I will write a story about Blanik later. I also would like to write something about nice Moravian women.
Drinking with Moravians — diary of a Prague fellow
I remeber a funny text about "a Prague fellow" who got to Moravia first time.
"Monday — I am drinking with Moravians."
"Tuesday — I feel like I gonna die!"
"Wednesday — I am drinking with Moravians again!"
"Thursday — I feel sorry I had not died on tuesday"
Yes — that could be the problem. You get to Morava, they take you as a member of family and soon you get locked in a wine cellar. You drink, you eat, you sing and you smile. But do not forget — watch out not to miss Your departure flight from Prague! :-))
If you woul be interested in getting to have a nice, unforgettable (and cheap) wine trip to Morava, just write us an email or message (message form here), we can arrange all things for you. And it will be our great pleasure to serve you as a taxi / transfer company. We will make sure you do not miss your flight back home 🙂