The recently renewed Borsai Villa was the venue of the Mád Circle's St Vincent Day tasting event on 19th January. The renovation and extension of this magnificent early-20th-century building were completed late last year. The owner, the municipality of Mád, had earlier entered into an agreement with the Debrecen University with a view to utilising the villa as a regional research and education centre for viticulture and oenology. The Borsai Villa is one of many municipally and privately funded projects that have lately helped raise the profile of Mád and strengthen its position as one of the Tokaj region's most developed villages.
Founded in 2006, the Mád Circle (Mádi Kör in HU) is an association of winemakers with vineyards in the Mád area that originally set out to pave the way for a new, more stringent appellation control system for the entire region. While many of the regulations they laid out for themselves have since then been partly integrated into the Tokaj Product Specification, the membership continues to impose upon themselves additional and more stringent regulations, such as yield limits and age of vines.
Folk belief has it that buds breaking on canes cut on Saint Vincent"s Day is a sign of no frost damage to the crop and hence a good yield for the upcoming growing season. Vintners of old also used to try to predict the yield based on how the buds developed. Saint Vincent"s Day is, therefore, always cause for some sort of celebration and tasting events in Hungary's wine regions.