ETYEK-BUDA, HUNGARY-Hungary is known in the Western imagination for just a select, few things. Goulash? Yes, absolutely. Paprika, their national spice? Perhaps. Gold-medal-grade Olympic wrestlers? Indeed, by the dozen. But their wine — much less cheese — won’t move the needle for many culinary experts west of the Carpathians.
But still, I’m here in a one of the country’s top, recently prize-winning wine regions, watching a rather broad-shouldered man (possibly, formerly one of those Olympians) in a sizable striped tank top wrestling a big, 26-kilo wheel of sheep’s cheese, his hulking arms and great slab of a back straining to get it done while we look on, holding glasses of red in a dark cellar somewhere southeast of Budapest.