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We know from Hungary that it is the country of origin of the "Vinum Regum, Rex Vinorum" (Wine of Kings, King of Wines) is like King Louis XIV of France his favorite sweet wines, the Tokaji Aszú, denoted. Wines made from grapes infected with noble rot are. However, this Central European country has one of the most pre-eminent culinary cultures in the region and a winemaking tradition that extends beyond its exceptional dessert wines.

Now let's learn a little more about the Wines of Hungary, the best kept secret in the oenological world.

What do you think if we orientate ourselves first?

Hungary is in the heart of Europe. It is a landlocked country and borders on Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Ukraine and Slovakia.

Hungary lies between the 46th and 49th parallel, as do other large wine regions in France that extend from the north of the Rhône to Champagne. In addition, it has an orography of gentle slopes and soils made of volcanic material with limestone cliffs, which are ideal for the cultivation and development of the vine, as well as for the production of fine wines.

Hungary has no coast and the country is mainly a large plain, which is crossed by large rivers like the Danube, from north to south. Or the Tisza, which comes from the Ukraine and crosses the country parallel to the Danube. In addition, there is an important lake landscape in which Lake Balaton stands out as the largest.

Now that you know these characteristics, you will be wondering: How is it that we don't have any more knowledge about Hungarian wines and they are not more present on the market?

A little history

Hungary has the honor of having the world's first vineyard classification system, which was introduced in 1700. And until a century ago it was Hungary one of the most important wine producers in Europe. The Hungarian white wines and dry red wines, as well as the noble ones Tokaj sweet wines found place on the noblest tables.

But the aggressive phylloxera attack on Hungarian vineyards at the end of the 19th century, the two world wars and more than 40 years of the communist system took a heavy toll on the Hungarian wine sector, which, luckily for all of us, is beginning to recover and show itself at its best.

Young winemakers come to the fore to restore the country's winemaking tradition and show us that Hungary's wealth over the importance of its "liquid gold", the Tokaj sweet wine, goes out. They offer us elaborations, both for red and white wines, which are a topic of conversation and which are becoming easier to find on the market every day.

Furmint and Hárslevelü, the white queens

A wide variety of native varieties grow in Hungarythat give their wines their own personality and identity.

Among all the grapes we can find there The white Furmint variety stands out, an intense grape with a firm structure, and the Hárslevelü, which is softer and more fragrant. Both are the undisputed protagonists in the production of sweet wine with "noble rot".

The dry white wines from the Furmint variety are less known than the cute Tokaji, however, have many similarities with those of the varietyRiesling on. They offer notes that are reminiscent of citrus fruits, with smoky and spicy nuances that are ideal for Asian dishes, chicken or fish.

"Vinum Regum, Rex Vinorum"

We cannot talk about Hungary without the "Wine of Kings, King of Wines", the sweet Tokaj wine, to mention. This world oenological jewel will be Made in the Tokaj region from grapes infested with Botrytis cinerea, also known as "noble rot". This fungus causes the berries to dehydrate, concentrate the amount of sugar in the pulp and dry out the skin of the grapes.

Dry white wines are also produced in the Tokaj region, so it is important to know how to distinguish the two.Those that contain grapes with noble rot mention the word aszú, which means "dried," which refers to the presence of berries that have been dehydrated by botrytis. These are mainly the varieties Furmint and Hárslevelü, that are used to make these wines and the amount used is indicated by "Puttonyos".

The word Puttonyo or puttony refers to the basket that contains the noble rotten grapesthat are added to each barrel in the production of this sweet wine. These baskets have a capacity of 25 kilos and each The more puttonyos a wine contains, the sweeter it is.

Tokajer Aszú Eszencia are the wines with the highest number of puttonyos, 7 in total, which makes it practically a delicious nectar that, despite its sweetness, is of beautiful complexity and surprising acidity. In short, a worthy potion for queens and kings.

All in all, Hungary offers us a true wine experience, which we invite you to discover with the following wines:

4 Hungarian wines that will whet your appetite for more

Szent Tamás Mád

Szent Tamás Mád is the ideal access to the dry white wines from Hungary. Made from the country's king variety, the FurmintGrape, it offers us the most modern side of the work of young winemakers like István Szepsi Jr.who runs the winery Szent Tamás and presents us with a delicious fresh white wine with herbal notes and beautiful mineral nuances. What are you waiting for to try it!

Szent Tamás Nyulaszo

We recommend Szent Tamás Nyulaszo from the same winery as the previous one, where you can enjoy the benefits of the two white flagship varieties of the country, Furmint and Hérslevelüin their most elegant version. A white wine with a fine barrel aging, which gives it a silky medium palate, accompanied by citrus and floral aromas, and which shows a promising ability to age.

Disznókö Tokaji Late Harvest

Let's start the journey to the most famous cry Hungary, the sweet wines. With Disznókö Tokaji Late Harvest however, we will do this in a subtle way. He will be in the Tokaj-Hegyalja region from grapes of the variety Furmint that are harvested late and where also a minimal part of the Botrytis cinerea affected grapes is added. This leads to a slightly sweet wine that retains a lot of liveliness and freshness and is the benchmark for Tokaj wines.

Tokaj Oremus Aszú 3 Puttonyos

With Tokaji Oremus Aszú 3 Puttonyos we enter the world of the exquisite Tokaj sweet wines. He gets from that Oremus winery, part of the Tempos Vega Sicilia group, an undeniable guarantee of quality. It is a sweet wine that combines aromas of tropical fruits with notes of flowers, honey and balsamic vinegar. A delicious treat not to be missed.

Château Dereszla Aszú Eszencia

With the Château Dereszla Aszú Eszencia we reach the peak of the elaboration of sweet wines Aszú Tokaji. This wine is practically a nectar, the name of which already suggests that it is the pure essence of the elixir that is obtained during the winemaking of grapes that are affected by “noble rot”. A fine wine, full-bodied, but with an acidity that gives it freshness. A luxury that you should treat yourself to at least once in your life. It is not for nothing that it has earned the title “Wine of Kings, King of Wines”.

This is just a glimpse of everything Hungarian wines offer us. No doubt one of the best kept secrets of Central Europe, whose great properties are still waiting to be discovered and enjoyed by us.

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