Another brilliant Hungarian Kadarka - I'm starting to like this grape

Hot on the heels of the fabulous Szentesi, I’ve been lucky enough to bump into another brilliant Hungarian Kadarka, this time from Orsolya. This is such an interesting variety, I’ll be looking out for more.

Orsolya Kadarka 2009 Egri Borvidek, Hungary
12.5% alcohol. Pale cherry red colour. Lovely sweet cherry fruit aromatics with some fine, spicy, herby [...]

A remarkable Hungarian Kadarka

Now this, dear readers, is a brilliant wine. It’s a Hungarian red made from the Kadarka variety, which is a new discovery for me. From my limited experience, I reckon this is a really interesting grape, making elegant wines a bit reminiscent of Pinot Noir.

It’s made by József Szentesi, whose mission has been to work [...]

A brilliant Hungarian Syrah

Really enjoyed this over the last two nights. It’s a Syrah made by an Austrian in the Sopron region of Hungary. Thrilling stuff.

Weninger Syrah 2009 Sopron, Hungary
13.5% alcohol. really fresh, peppery nose showing black pepper, black cherry and spice notes, as well as a hint of clove. The palate is fresh with pepper and spice [...]

Hungary, Day 3, and a visit to lake Balaton

Tara Q Thomas and Wojciech Boknowski taking snaps of winning bottles

It is a measure, perhaps, of how good some of the wines in the Pannon Wine Challenge were that when the winners were unveiled at the end of tasting, the judges all crowded round with cameras and iPhones in order to photograph the winning [...]

In Hungary, day 2, and a visit to the Abbey Winery in Pannonhalma

Another full day of judging Hungarian wines. We spent the morning finishing tasting all 300 in our groups of three and then in the afternoon joined together, to retaste all the wines that had got through the cut.

John Szabo

It’s a great way of judging because we all get to taste all the good wines. [...]

In Hungary, day 1

I’m here in Hungary, judging the Pannon Wine Challenge 2012.

There’s a nice group of judges this year. Three panels, each led by Hungarians, with two international judges on each.

Gyor

The local judges are Gabriella Mézáros, András Kató and László Romsics, and the international judges are Alder Yarrow, Tara Q Thomas, Isabelle Legeron, Wojciech Bonkowski, John [...]

A serious Hungarian Chardonnay from Grof Buttler

I’m off to Hungary next week, so I thought this would be an appropriate time to blog about this rather stylish Hungarian Chardonnay. It’s from Grof Buttler, a producer I know little about, but which I’d like to know better. They are based in Eger, and their currently unreconstructed website is here.

Gróf Buttler Chardonnay 2009 [...]

Video: tasting three Gewurztraminers

So, here’s a short film. I taste three different Gewurztraminers – from Alsace, Chile and Hungary – and talk about them.

A brief trip to Hungary

Just on my way home for a brief trip to Eger, in Hungary. I was attending a meeting organized by agrochemical company BASF for some of their most important (viticulture) customers in Hungary.

I left at some unearthly hour from Heathrow yesterday, arriving in Eger by lunchtime. The meeting room was incredibly flash, with multiple screens [...]

Sweet wine season, 10: Royal Tokaji’s mythical Essencia

A mythical wine. So sweet it could hardly ferment at all, made from the free run juice from selected botrytized aszu berries. Drunk from a spoon, too.

The Royal Tokaji Company Essencia 2000 Tokaji, Hungary
2.9% alcohol, 620 g/litre residual sugar. Remarkable stuff, fermented and aged in glass jars for seven years, and not technically [...]