Onion peel inclined to beige hue.
Fresh perfumed nose with some apple acid coming through along with vinious notes of Szürkebarát. On the palate sharp acidity, making this possibly the most acidic wine I’ve ever tasted. Fresh, citric and thin, this wine will certainly divide opinions.
This is an entry level, budget wine for hot summer days.
Pale matt yellow hue. Rather restrained on the nose with light notes of lavender and vegetables and a subtle oaky butter accent. Medium-bodied Chardonnay without obvious Chardonnay notes. Barrel aging spices instead, supported by a fairly acidic backbone delivering a tingling texture. Surprisingly pleasant at room temperature (21 centigrade in this case), showing rich and minerally with an overall good balance.
Fairly priced (HUF 2 350).
Pale lemon yellow. With so much butter on the nose the use of oak is too apparent, although not too disturbing, with light hints of fruit underneath. There’s too much scratchy tannin on the palate for such a small bodied wine. It’s an overall very light and pretty uninteresting Pinot Blanc.
We’ve finished off a bottle of Orsolya’s Abrakadabra the same evening and the contrast was stunning, but I can’t recall all the details and I didn’t mind buying a new bottle so the review will be coming soon.
Read more Rókusfalvy reviews here.
In February 2011 for the first time ever I chose to buy a Pezsgő (Hungarian sparkling wine), it was entirely my decision without being suggested by my wife, a big fan of Champagne. It started some years ago with our New Eve sparkling breakfasts, then one thing led to another and I can state that I now enjoy sparkling wines as much as I enjoy any other wine. The breakthrough came with a Laurent-Perrier Brut 1993 few weeks ago with its delightfully structured style, smoothly integrated palate and mature harmony only found in vintage wines.
Hungarian sparkling wines (or at least those made using traditional method, which I buy) are, of course, modest compared to the Champagnes. But I enjoy some of the rosés and I found this Chateau Vincent Evolution Rosé, 2005 particularily delightful.
It is made of 100% Pinot Noir which makes it look onion peel colored with some brassy reflections. It smells of yeast and toasted bread but it’s more aromatic and fruity on the palate with a bit of residual sugar (20g/L) which I find rather pleasant in this wine (in many white wines in fact), supported by firm apple flavoured acidity. Realtively fleshy mouthfil with aromas of chalky strawberry jam and toasted bread flowing into a very long yeasty finish with hints of pistache.
This is a very good effort, perhaps the best I have seen in its category and it confirms Garamvári Szőlőbirtok (best known as Ch. Vincent) as one of my two favorite Pezsgő makers of the regrettably short list of Pezsgő makers.
Note : pictures have been missing lately because my DSLR had broken and I couldn’t fix it yet so this and the last few pictures were taken with a budget mobile phone camera.
A century ago Hungary arguably used to be very good at making sparkling wines using Méthode Champenoise. I have no idea what those wines were like and I’m absolutely sure that no one at Törley has more clue than most of us. It is, therefore, an abuse of heritage to put the information about the founders of the original winery everywhere for marketing purposes, including the label. For those unfamiliar with Hungarian history and its present: we’re absolutely unable to transfer values from pre-WW1 to the present although we like to look at ourselves as a culturally evolved bunch of geniuses. I’m sure that the traditional method didn’t change much over the century (otherwise they wouldn’t call it traditional I suppose), everything else did.
Although I believe that if spakling wines are featured on this blog then perhaps other alcoholic beverages like Cognac should too, I think that the tiny supply of fine Hungarian sparkling wines will not take too much space from Hungarian wines. So here’s the tasting notes of one of Hungary’s finest.
Francois Président Rosé Brut
Peach and brassy hue, charming as rosé sparklings tend to be, with many tiny bubbles. Very restrained nose with only some yeasty notes. On the palate it’s very dry as one might expect. Ultra-light and not very aromatic, with acidic backbone being the prime and almost only feature on the palate. Good length though.
This is 10% more expensive than Kreinbacher’s rosé spakling wine and I prefer it to Francois. Considering the labour intensity of the method, both wines are reasonably priced though.
I appreciate Mr. Szentesi’s experimental apporach which sometimes yields frenetic wines but somehow really rubbish wines also find their way to the market, and when they do they don’t come cheap! This Pinot Noir from 2008 was barely drinkable at start and hardly something Mr. Szentesi should be proud of 2 hours later. C’mon!
Blind tasting is fun. Especially when the person pouring the wine (the only one who knows which one is which wine) mixes up the bottles and you only realise this almost a year later. At least this is what I’m suspecting now that I read my previous review of the wine. My suspicion is based on comparing it with my current notes which are if not identical but from a specific aspect very similar to the one I took of the Springfield Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand. Here it is (nothing’s been recycled).
Clean, pale lemon color with light greenish reflections. Intense but light nose first with citrus and balm notes and some nettle aroma. Later lilac mingled with Sauerkraut. On the palate it’s very acidic in a lime fashion mingled with Sauerkraut, juicy passion fruit and litchi, further on with hints of boiled celery and hints of gooseberry, all perfectly integrated into the tart acidity. It sounds like a strange mix but somehow it works. It’s a pleasant wine but get ready for the most tongue-squeezing experience!
Price: HUF 2 500
This is the entry level to the wines from Csúcs hegy close to Nadap of perhaps slightly schizophrenic “artisan” winemaker/entertainment entrepreneur Szentesi. Don’t get me wrong, I tend to like his wines very much and he still runs one of the best low-budget restaurants in town (even after sharp fall in quality) and shopping from the walls of a pool table showroom behind a car-washing garage is equal to none.
This is a medium deep straw-colored wine with a light chalky mineral character and lots of aromatic ripe apple. It has a pleasant, slightly fizzy tartness in the finish and just enough acidity. Fruity, even intrusively, with notes of pineapple.
It’s a simple, but good wine made using traditional methods as proudly emphasized by Mr. Szentesi.
Score: 4 points
Price: HUF 1 800
After Etyeki Kúria’s recent good performance far from their home ground I felt brave enough to try their flag-ship cuvée made of 90% Chardonnay and 10% Sauvignon Blanc. Great choice this blend proved to be.
With it’s very light floral nose it’s an instant appeal, with slices of chalky minerality and a fair amount of fruitiness. Well structured bouquet of many layers with only light-weight hints of oaky vanilla, well done. On the palate it’s really flat after a fast vibrant start. All that remains is melted butter. Well balanced, nice medium bodied wine with a light feel.
Score: 5+/6- points
Staring at Etyeki Kúria’s Magyar Vándor 2007 I’m thinking about how I tend to freak out when I see a red wine, especially for under HUF 4 000 from Mátraalja, Somló or sometimes even red areas. So imagine the flash when some kind of positive surprise hits you in this condition. Take this wine for instance, it didn’t only take tartness out of the equation but added minerality to it. Now you’re talking!
Don’t expect this wine look any better than you’d think! You won’t like it: it’s pale blurred ruby with a brownish and pinkish add-on, forget about it.
The nose is empty, quite literally. The palate, however, seems well-balanced, smootly textured and well integrated, all Pinot Noir-esque. In an hour or so my glass begins to fill with the wine fault I like the most: salty minerality. It’s very essential to compensate the sweetness deriving from alcohol (14 percent, mate!) which doesn’t burn and doesn’t feel, well, except the sweetness. I’m sure many people would desire more definition to it but I’m fine with the acidity of this wine as well as with the soft, powdery tannins of it.
Good wine, drinks well and fast.
Etyek wasn’t even on the wine map 10 years ago. Today if you want to get to the Etyek Pincefesztivál you need to face a crowd perhaps 25x the population of the village. And today they’re exporting their know how to Sopron.
Score: 5+(/6-) points
Price: HUF 3 500