Jan 11, 2011

Wines of diplomacy - the Bussay winery

The Bussay winery is a small winery that was founded as a hobby of general practioner dr. med. László Bussay. The winery consist of about 20 acres of vineyards, but despite the size of the winery their wines are excellent.

László Bussay (
One of the most special things about this winery in my opinion is how it has proven that a winery from the Zala wine region can not only make good wines, but can also well respected by vintners of more famous and internationally recognized wine regions of Hungary such as Tokaj, Eger and Villány. The winery is at the Hungarian border of both Slovenia and Croatia.

The philosophy of the winery is to follow traditional methods and so they use 1000-1200 liter oak barrels to mature the wines. They bottle all of their wines which are sold throughout Hungary and also on location where there is possibility of a wine tasting.

Their top wine:
Esküvé This wine is blend of Riesling and Rhine Riesling in a 60 to 40 % ratio. The grapes are harvested with high sugar points and after spending time in the oak barrels the wine has a great full-bodied flavour.

Les vins diplomatique

During the Hungarian EU presidency the diplomats visiting Hungary will be served the finest of the Hungarian wines. Hungary has been a traditional European winemaking nation for centuries after the end of the socialist era privately owned Hungarian wineries rose to prominence and now they are trying to promote their products not only within Hungary, but in the premium sector of wines throughout Europe and some throughout the world.

In a new series of posts I will introduce to you those wineries whose wines will be served to the diplomats of Europe in the next couple of months when they visit Hungary.

I will begin with the producer of fantastic white wines the Bussay winery.

Winter images of Pécs

Jan 6, 2011

Talking Korean

It is reported that the two Koreas will not talk the South rejected the North's offer on talks. North Korea called for unconditional and early talks with the South to ease the tensions that have grown between them in the last couple of months after attacks that both sides blame on the other.

North Korea has been in a very difficult position in the last couple of years losing it communist allies after the fall of the Soviet Union, practically their only ally remained China. In the fall of 2010 the Wikileaks incident however brought to light that Chinese officials were thinking about the reunification of the two Koreas after the death of N Korean leader Kim Jong-il. The leak in my opinion put N Korea in an even more difficult position especially since it has been running out of resources namely food and energy supplies. The only thing N Korea can bargain with is its nuclear disarmement, which has been the main subject of six party talks (N Korea, S Korea, China, Russia, USA, Japan) for years and years now.

The resentment of S Korea makes it clear that if the North wants to reach anything it will sooner or later have to give up more of its goals and eventually begin a new diplomatic approach which might lead to a new relationship between the two countries, which also might come at a time of change in N Korea where the leader's son has been raised to a high position, which could be the sign of passing on power.

How international is the EU?

The question might seem simple or even stupid, but believe me it is not.

The EU is of course an international organization, a regional international organization the organization of the European region. The EU is at the same time not just the international forum, a cooperative force of the European continent it is also a player on the international soccer field.

This little introduction might be abstract, but it is quite relevant in the question of international affairs and in my opinion also because of the relevance of affairs.

My example is Hungary. Hungary is in the news all over Europe because of three things:
- taking over the presidency in the Council of the EU for the first half of 2011
- 13 leading companies complain about new taxation
and most importantly because of the new media law.

I would't like to go into detail in any of these subjects what I would like to underline the fact that these subjects have been exploited and written about throughout the European newspapers and online forums.
They have been also mentioned in some leading papers in the USA, but truly I believe that these matters on an international scale are totally irrelevant.

I do not think that the EU and USA realtions are going to be affected by internal media regulations in Hungary. So my concern here is the following is it possible that we are seeing a two faced EU external policy or rather a is there such great level of diffirence between the EU member states that while the smallest moves in the great economies of the EU make headlines in the world some member states (the smaller ones) are disappearing in the shadow of the EU and they are the true states that are represented by an EU external affairs service?

Is their going to be the UK, French, German and the EU policy? Will this clear procedure be shown in the new world order of a changing UN Security Council? Or will the great economies of the EU give up part of their sovereignty and come to the support of the little ones? And if so will that mean that there will be a well functioning EU represented not only on state dinners, but also in the state media of China?

too many questions....

Jan 4, 2011

China-Russia pipeline

Yesterday the Chinese news agency Xinhua reported that the crude oil pipeline between Russia and China has been opened and is operational. The pipeline is approximately a 1000 kilometers long. The ESPO pipeline will help ease the energy hunger of China and the Russian dependence on the European market.

The ESPO pipeline (

In the past couple of years we have seen many tensions between Russia and European nations within the energy supply sector. Most notably the Russian and Ukranian dispute on gas prices which led to the Russians cutting off supplies and thus affecting millions of consumers in Europe. With a new pipeline between Russia and China Europe has to be even more careful with proce tactics and market strategies as the Russian now have a better position in negotiations. Still the dependence for now stays mutual and thus compromises have to be made.