Hungarian Wine and Grape Varieties

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2007 at 12:00 am

Hungary wineHungarian wine is known for its long history which dates back to at least the Roman times. Hungarian wine has reflected its country’s position between the Slavs and the Germanic peoples. Those which are worthy of attention are the white dessert wines (Tokaji) and Bull’s Blood (Egri Bikavér), which is a full-bodied red wine. And so without further adieu, we present to you the different wines of Hungary.

Tokaji – The most famous wine in Hungary is the Tokaji. It is produced at the foothills of the Carpathian mountains. The wine is made through allowing noble rot and eventually coming up with aszu grapes which are shriveled. T

he so-called aszu grapes are crushed, made into a paste and mixed the must of other grapes such as Muscat Blanc a Petits, Hárslevelű and Orémus Grains and Furmint. The wine that is made out of these mixtures is aged in small barrels wherein thick blankets of fungus on the walls regulat the humidity.

Egri Bikavér – Another name of Egri Bikavér is the Bull’s Blood of Eger. The wine is a complex blend of red wines that date back to the Turkish invasion. During the Turkish invasion, the Turks brought the Kadarka grape and taught locals how to make a full-bodied red wine. Over the years, it has evolved through the introduction of new grapes to the mix.

Now the for each Egri Bikaver blend must contain at least three out of Kadarka, Blaufränkisch (Kékfrankos), Blauer Portugieser (Kékoportó), Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot (Kékmedoc), Pinot Noir, Syrah, Blauburger and Zweigelt, with at least 40% being Kadarka or Blaufränkisch.

Wines West of Budapest – There are several notable wines in this region. The Budafok wine has similar conditions and tastes to Champagne, the Ezerjo white wine resemble a lot like Chardonnay and Traminer.

Somló – Somló dry and white wines were once noted to be more famous than Tokaji at one point in time simple because of the microclimate and rich volcanic soils.

Welschriesling – This type of wine is found in Lake Balaton which is the largest lake in Central Europe. The favorable microclimate allows the production of aszu wines. On the north coast, Badacsony is the most famous region, with Balatonfüred-Csopak to the east region and to the west, Balatonfelvidék and the new region of Balatonmelléke.

Their vineyards contain mostly Welschriesling, Müller-Thurgau and some Pinot Gris. On the warmer south side, Balatonboglár has some red grapes as well as Welschriesling and Királyleányka.

Table wines – The Great Hungarian Plain has vast fields of vineyard that were cultivated to combat desertification. Because of this, the regions of Kunság, Csongrád and Hajós-Baja are renowned for the quantity of table wine they produce rather than the quality.

So there you go, the best and brightest of the Hungarian wines. They may probably be known for their full-bodied flavors and unusual manufacturing methods because of the aszu wines, but they certainly will give you enough uniqueness that you will not be able to forget them once you’ve tasted and experienced them.