About Romanian Wine. Busuioaca de Bohotin, the pride of the people between the vineyards
The first historical record of the town of Husi dates from 1494, the 15th century.
Photo credit: (c) Cornel MOCANU / AGERPRES ARCHIVE
Records show that ruler Stephen the Great had a church built in Husi named after Saint Apostles Peter and Paul. Guarded in the past by vast vineyards, Husi is known as the town between vineyards. Locals have this saying that no path to Husi is worth taking unless there is some tasting of the vineyards' fruit.
The wines that make Husi people proud are Busuioaca de Bohotin, a liquorish, sweet wine with a jasmine and rose bouquet that is served mainly with desserts, and the white Zghihara de Husi, a wine for common consumption, representative of the dry wines of the Husi wine cellars that is a persistent, yellow greenish wine with a fine and acid bouquet of green apple.
Busuioaca de Bohotin is a traditional Romanian grapevine variety cultivated on small areas of Moldavia, at Bohotin and Iasi, as well as in Wallachia, at Pietroasele and Dealu Mare. Specialists say the variety has acclimatised the best in Husi, because of the local soil characteristics.
The famous Busuioaca de Bohotin has won accolades from those who have had the privilege of tasting it.
Ph. D. Professor Gheorghe Neamu called Busuioaca de Bohotin 'the eighth wonder of the vegetal and food world,' while academician Constantin Ciopraga, professors Ilie Dan and Ion Constantin are quoted by Ph.D Professor Avram D. Tudosie of the Dimitrie Cantemir Agricultural College of Husi as saying 'this is a heroic wine that bears a noble title while combining the sonorities of Bohotin and divine creation.'
In the visitors' notebook of the Dimitrie Cantemir Agricultural College of Husi, the continuator of the Dimitrie Cantemir Viticulture School established in 1908, Ph. D. T. Martin wrote, 'The Busuioaca de Bohotin wine of Husi was and will ever be an object of national pride for the vineyard and the country.'
Photo credit: (c) Constantin DUMA / AGERPRES ARCHIVE
Aesthetician Mihai Ralea called it 'a wine with so rich a bouquet that is so hard to find that even a small bottle is seldom uncorked and only in big houses. This is an event wine.'
Academician V.D. Costea compared Busuiaca de Bohotin of Husi to 'a beautiful, discreetly perfumed, brunette whose face betrays some attractive delicacy of a blonde girl,' while Avram D. Tudosie said it is 'like a beautiful girl that warms you when looking at her and gets you drunk if you kiss her as well.'
Legend has it that Busuioaca de Bohotin was once exclusively for the consumption of medieval ruler Stephan the Great. Even today, the areas under it are small. The Grapevine Register of Vaslui County indicates there are only 130.5 hectares under Busuioaca de Bohotin.
'The area under Busuioaca has increased from the year before, as taken into account are also the areas from the first years of culture reconversion. Zghihara de Husi is cultivated over 85.5 hectares. Both Zghihara and Busuioaca are traditional varieties of the Husi vineyards that have won the locals many national and international accolades,' says engineer Traian Huluta of the Vaslui Agricultural Directorate.
The Dimitrie Cantemir Agricultural College of Husi cultivates Busuioaca and Zghihara over small areas, producing the wine for its own collection and for tasting classes.
A highly appreciated viticulture school has developed in time in Husi, with hundreds of viticulture specialist graduates. The college teachers say students are increasingly less interested in horticulture nowadays.
Photo credit: (c) Alex TUDOR / AGERPRES ARCHIVE
'Education has underwent modifications, much as in other fields. Sciences are taught in modules and education is different from some years ago. Students seem increasingly less interested in all that has to do with vine and wine. They are studying increasingly less and are not reading specialist books. According to the curriculum, we hold tasting classes with 12th graders, but this is just perfunctory consumer knowledge, as further education is provided at specialist universities. The tasting class are very important to the Husi students. It would be a pity for the children of vine growers to not ever taste genuine Busuioaca or some special Zghihara,' says Eugenia Gaita regretfully. She is the curator of the educational farm of the college and is in charge with practical training of the students.
The teaching staff of the college have trained and educated in time renowned specialists and engineers as well as researchers.