Tisza International Fish Festival

On the Saturday before we went to Bulgaria, we road down to the Tisza river, whose banks were lined with festival goers eager to try some of the city’s famous fish soup and other aquatic creature specialties. Europe is a land of festivals. Some are larger than others and most are celebrating some quirky or folkloric local love, but when in a European city, there is almost always something to do. And the first September weekend in Szeged is the fish festival.

I make it a personal goal to try to always attend any festival with oversized cooking apparati.

Any cauldron that didn’t require scaffolding and a 20 foot spoon was sort of lame.

We had the fried plate that came with fully-teethed walleye and some frittes. And for the price of the plate we got a free glass of wine! But even more surprising–the thing that made me have to pinch myself to remember that I was still in Hungary–they gave us free and UNLIMITED KETCHUP!!!!!

And even though we eat Szeged style fish soup regularly, we shared a bowl from the super-sized cauldron. It was delicious, as always.

After we ate, we headed down to the river to cheer on the dragon boat teams and enjoy our wine under that late afternoon awning. Honestly, it’s a pretty typical Saturday afternoon in Hungary, which is why even in times when I feel the most travel-fatigued, I still smile to live in Europe. Of course that day had a cherry on top of its pretty little head because we left the festival and headed to Arpad’s house to watch Ohio State’s first game on ESPN America. Ah, the great wide global world!


3 thoughts on “Tisza International Fish Festival

    • That’s a great question! I don’t think that this year they had some kind of competition or the like. The festival in Hungary really celebrates the unique recipe for a specific type of fish that lives in the Tisza River. So the event is the celebration of the cooking itself!

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