Skip to main content

Two Classic Hungarian Wines

My sister lived in Budapest for over a decade so I feel like I should know a little more about Hungarian wines than I do. She brought wine back on her twice yearly visits but we knew less about wine then than we do now so often times we were surprised by whatever may be inside, sometimes it was good and sometimes it was just scary. The grape varieties were usually something that we were unfamiliar with and wine styles seemed to vary quite a bit as well. It was definitely always interesting.

When studying the wines of Hungary, there is always a focus on two of their historically famous wines. The first is the red wine Egri Bikaver or "Bulls Blood" from Eger which is located north east of Lake Balaton. Traditionally, it was a full-bodied wine from the Kekfrankos and Kadarka grapes but newer more modern versions are also being made in a lighter style for both body and tannins and are less expensive in price. These newer versions are often made from the traditional Kekfrankos (aka Blaufrankisch) but with Cabernet Sauvignon instead of the Kadarka.
2008 Egervin Bulls Blood Original Egri Bikaver
Clear, medium purple color. Clean, light developing aromas of black pepper and black fruit. Dry, medium body and alcohol, medium+ tannins and acidity, medium- finish. Structure somewhat overwhelms the low intensity rustic flavor. Acceptable+

The other focus is the sweet wines of Tokaji, a region in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains along the Slovakian border. The three main grapes are Furmint, Harslevelu and Sarga Muscotaly (Muscat Blanc). At harvest, grapes are sorted into three categories, the ones that are botrytis affected are used to make Tokaji Aszu. The level of sweetness is reflected in the puttunyo measurement with 3 as the lowest sugar level and 6 as the highest. The bottle pictured is 5 Puttonyos, which means it must have a minimum of 120 grams per liter of residual sugar.          

2006 Royal Tokaji Aszu 5 Puttonyos
Clear light amber color. Clean, medium developing aromas of honey, citrus blossom, apricot and almond. Sweet, full body, light alcohol, medium+ acidity with a long white raisin and honey finish. Very good/ drink or hold.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Nocera - A Native Grape from Sicily

Nocera is a native grape from Sicily. It comes from the Messina province which is located in the northeast. Nocera is a quality red wine grape that is most known as a blender in the red wines of the Faro DOC. I had the opportunity to taste some pure versions (which according to Wine Searcher are rare) this week at a trade tasting held at Roma Restaurant in Houston. Wine production in the region dates back to the 14th Century BC, however, phylloxera decimated the vineyard area in 1881 leaving it at a fraction of its original size. The area boasts a Mediterranean climate with sunny days and coastal breezes, moderate rainfall, and mild winters, all ideal for grape growing. The Nocera grape is a bluish/black color and has a thick skin which allows for the production of structured wines with prominent tannins which are balanced by good acidity. High alcohol is common. Red wines produced from the grapes are an intense ruby color with purple highlights and aromas and flavors of dark fruits a

The Villa Sandi Houston Sommelier Competition Winners

This past Sunday, Taste of Italy - Houston held The Villa Sandi Houston Sommelier Competition at the Hilton Post Oak in collaboration with the Italian American Chamber of Commerce . The competition was orchestrated to help local sommeliers hone their both their service and test taking skills while showcasing their knowledge of all things wine. Competitors started with a deductive tasting and theory exam and concluded with a table service exam. The winners were announce on Monday morning at the opening of the Taste of Italy - Houston. Tony Elsinga won the top prize of $750 along with a trip to Italy. Mark Fusco was the first runner up also winning $750 and and Carlos Rosas was the second runner up earning a $500 prize. Each winner also was a gifted a jerobaum bottle of Villa Sandi Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore.  The competition was originally conceived by Jaime Deleon , the Adult Beverage Sales Manager for Kroger's Houston Division and an Advanced Sommelier in the Court of Mast

The Ultimate Zinfandel Experience - ZinEX

In the September issue of Galveston Monthly, I'm celebrating California Wine Month with the Golden State's signature grape, Zinfandel. I am also sharing information on the ultimate experience for Zinfandel lovers, ZinEX, get more information on that event at  https://zinfandelexperience.com/