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Baron Franz von der Trenck
Empress Maria Theresia of Austria. Martin van Meytens, 1759.
The Kutjevo wine cellar

 

 

There is a love legend hiding among the wine bottles in the cellar of Kutjevo castle. The Kutjevo winery traces its beginnings in 13th century and is well-known and recognized for the quality of wine it produces. As the story goes, in first half of 18th century, two important figures met at Kutjevo castle while passing through Croatia. The first one was Baron Franz von der Trenck and the second none other than Austro-Hungarian queen Maria Theresa who stopped at Kutjevo on her way to Osijek. To impress the Queen, the Baron spent the evening with her opening and tasting the best wines that the winery had to offer. After some time, under the influence of the wine as much as of the Baron’s charm, the Queen fell in love with the Baron. The couple ordered their subordinates to leave them, posted guards at the entrance and spent the next seven days in the wine cellar – the wine serving them as an aphrodisiac.
When they finally exited the wine cellar, they parted without long goodbyes. The servants and cellarers entered the wine cellar and, beside a number of empty wine bottles, noticed 70 notches on a wall – one for every time the Baron and Queen made love. Beside the notches, the local people were surprised to find the old stone table indented, and another legend was born: the passion between the Baron and the Queen was so strong that it melted stone. It is believed that the marked table, that stands among the wine barrels to this day, holds a special power. Anyone who holds his or her palm on the surface of the table and makes a love wish will find it granted in a year’s time.