Čilejkári Known and Unknown
The sun-warmed air occasionally moves slightly. A panorama of Sitno ripples in the distance like a mirage. Vineyards are outlined on the southern slopes of the Štiavnické vrchy Mountains. Nearby fields are golden already and the fresh greenery of the vineyards leaves nobody in doubt as to where they are. We are in the centre of Tekov, the region of “čilejkári”. They replaced the adverb “now” (in Slovak “teraz”) by a distinctive “čil” or “čileky”, and that is not the only particularity of the local dialect.
Rich Folk Costume, Rich Region
Tekov isn’t beautiful only because of its natural scenery, but also because of its breath-taking folk costumes. The skirts, short vests called “lajblíky” and sleeves are richly decorated in each region, but the Tekov women’s bonnet is a true feast for the eyes. It gives the expression of strength, pride and determination to a woman’s face.
Agriculture and winemaking were traditional means of subsistence for people in Tekov. The wives of vinedressers did need strength and determination not so long ago. They got up very early, before the work in fields and vineyards began, to prepare food for the whole family. The woman’s task was to provide food and clothing for the whole family, take care of the household and the animals in the yard.
Čajkov – the Heart of Tekov
The village Čajkov is the most famous vinicultural village in the TEKOV Region. The historically supported facts suggest that the soil on which the village is located has always been used for the purposes of growing vineyards and the cellars dug under the village confirm the ancient presence of this branch. Wines from Čajkov were already mentioned by Matthias Bel in his work On Hungarian Wines. He described them as fiery wines, which are neither too sweet, nor too bitter, nor too salty. Common wines from Čajkov last longer; therefore, they are bought mostly by the people of Kremnica, Štiavnica and Bystrica, where these wines are drunk the most. Not so long ago, there were almost 300 vinicultural buildings in Čajkov.
The village has a Museum of Viniculture. The exposition is really engaging, especially for those who aren’t familiar with vinicultural equipment, work and customs.
There are several wineries in the village today. The biggest and the most famous is the modern family winery Víno Nichta with its own shop. They offer the opportunity of wine tasting to their customers in the tasting room. Further wineries in the village include Pivnica ČAJKOV, Anton Uhnák and Muráni Víno Čajkov.
There is a traditional Čajkov Grape Harvest Festival every autumn in the village.