Members of the Balatoni KÖR (Balaton CIRCLE) gathered on Saturday for several reasons:
- They opened the summer in Keszthely
- Simultaneously, they opened Dani Bezerics's Fröccsterasz
- They mixed a huge 2glass" of surprisingly fine fröccs of Balaton wines
- They explained what beach food is and presented their idea of it
- They just had to try Ernő Bergmanns wine ice cream
Catfish into the salad, wine into the ice cream
Let's start with the latter, since the young pastry-maker of the Bergmann family managed to astonish us as well. He served an ice cream made of Jásdi white wine plus a Merlot that made us suggest that this iced beach food delicacy must become an everyday item at Bergmann's at once - but it turned out it is quite the fuss to make it, so it might not be available often enough.
In addition to Balatoni KÖR's season opening fröccs session, the menu of Fröccsterasz (Fröccs Terrace) made a debut. Since the place is part of the Bezerics-empire, the selection is eerily similar to that of Kishableány or Paletta: being the ambassadors of beach food, the places run a bistro kitchen with the Keszthely-specific Teracce Burger, made of Angus beef from Balatonfenyves. This is the 2000-HUF premium category; the standard burger costs 1300 HUF, wile pizzas start at 1400 HUF .
The often-mentioned Márga Bistro also joined the beach food movement with the Vitorlás (Sailboat) salad, made with catfish pâté. It will definitely be on the menu in Csopak, and who knows, it might also conquer the entire Lake .
The waterdog that doesn't swim
Before anyone called RSPCA, the Hungarian waterdog is not an amphibian from Mexico. It is the name the Balatoni KÖR has given to the gastronomical breakthrough of the season and the ambassador of beach food: it is based on hot dog, with catfish sausage and wasabi-red onion sauce with cucumbers in a bun. The result is simple and simply heavenly: the seasoning is just right, even the "true sausages" of Pörc would be proud of the parallel. It hasn't made it to the standard menu of Fröccsterasz yet, but it could easily be included in the special offers in the summer.
Constantly working towards Balaton-specific reforms, the Balatoni KÖR would like to see the phenomenon of beach food - including Balcsi Bagel, waterdog and quality dishes, like the hamburger prepared with local ingredients - rule the menus of beach buffets.
They don't need to replace lángos, but act as an addition: no true Balaton believer would find a high standard lángos with loads of cheese problematic. The Balatoni KÖR emphasised that they don't wish for the exclusivity of Agnus beef burgers, but the conquest of quality buffets over deep frozen goods. Just like at Vén Kalóz Pizzéria & Ételbár in Balatonudvari-Fövenyes, soon to be featured on these pages.
For the very reason, the KÖR has launched a social media movement for this summer - also joined by We Love Balaton. All you have to do is to use the #beachfoodbalaton hashtag on Instagramra, Facebook, and everywhere to show where quality beach food is served around Lake Balaton.
There is also an associated (Hungarian) blog discussing the best spots and featuring We Love Balaton reports as well.