Somló is the smallest wine region we know that but even a week-end wine drinker can name at least 3-4 winemakers from Nagy-Somló and everyone’s heard about Juhfark of course. Now very few wine snobs put against the wall could name just one winery from Ság-hegy and even locals admit that this has to do with quality. I wrote about Dénes Hegybirtok already and I like Dénes Tibor’s experimental approach to winemaking (he hasn’t got any Juhfark but he’s making red cuvées each year) and his handicraft methods (he doesn’t even own the equipment necessary to fully process and put the wines in bottle). I always liked his light, entry-level white wines more than the heavier, more complex wines and I still do if value for money’s concerned.
The tasting notes
Permier Cuvée 2008 is a blend of Ezerfürtű, Olaszrizling, Irsai Olivér and Cserszegi Fűszeres and probably some other dozen varietals in smaller quantities. Semi-dry, with 12g residual sugar – this wasn’t intentional, they just didn’t intervene in nature’s job. This reductive wine’s very pale yellow with greenish reflections and very intense in aromas on the palate, mostly floral with a pear undertone. Small bodied with too little acidity for a semi-dry wine.
Score: 4, 4+
Premier Cuvée 2007 has a flint and slightly salty nose and unlike it’s newer edition this wine’s very dry. But also pale. Better balanced, this wine has a small body too and with a shorter finish than the 2008. On the palate this wines has green apple and vegetable notes.
Olaszrizling 2007 was fermented and aged (for 10-12 months) in 500l oak barrels, of this 5-6 months in contact with the lee! This resulted in a medium deep golden yellow wine, quite bright in the glass. Heavier, sweeter nose with vanilla notes. Also vanilla on the palate mingled with minerality. Nice creamy texture. It’s relatively well-balance with a wet hey undertone and some bitterness on the finish. A bit oily but well integrated.
Score: 5, 5+
Olaszrizling 2006 is even more intense, succulent and heavier on the nose with floral and mineral notes. But not so deep in color. On the palate it’s thinner than I expected after the sniff but has a long, bitter finish, the wine’s a little bit alcoholic and clearly over it’s peak.
Olaszrizling 2005 has marzipan, almond, and Port wine on the nose with a quince undertone. This wine is fullbodied with pistachio, citrus fruits and bitterness on the palate. And woody, maybe overly.
Chardonnay 2008 comes straight from the (second use barrique) barrel (and from the lee!) so it has a blurred corn color with greenish reflections. This wine is fruity with banana notes on the nose and on the palate. the nose also has apple and the palate vanilla elements. It’s round, medium-bodied and already well integrated. Good balance. Creamy texture.
Vörös Kakas 2008 is a blend of 60-70% Kékfrankos and the rest is Merlot, Pinot Noir and Portugieser. Medium pale ruby color. It’s still too harsh and young (well, not ready actually) with wood and gas elements, as long as fruitiness is concerned unripe cherry and sour cherry. On the palate fresh sour cherry. Small bodied wine with medium acidity and friendly tannins.
Vörös Kakas 2006 has pale red color. This wine was aged in 500 l barrique for 14 months, the same blend as the 2008 with a bit less Kékfrankos. More elegant and aromatic on the nose with raspberry and strawberry. Medium-large acidity and a bit tannic too, fresh and harsh. This small bodied wine is spicy on the palate.
Score: 5, 5-