Earlier this month I wrote about Hungarian wine with an offering from Tokaj, which is Hungary's most famous wine region. Right behind Tokaj is the relatively well known region of Eger. Unfortunately for many people in the United States, Eger was only well known for making communist era Bull's Blood, which was truly pretty awful stuff at the time. Without getting too deep into the politics of all, the communist regime in Hungary treated wine just like any other agricultural product and was only interested in maximizing production. The quality of what they produced didn't matter all that much. They just wanted a lot of it.
It was only after the communist regime fell, that grape growers and wine makers in Eger realized that they had some great terroir that in past centuries made great wine. They realized that with some care and attention to quality that they could make some really nice wines. Today in Eger, there are some really fantastic wines that almost have me forgetting all the times that my parents served me the awful communist era stuff.
Today's subject is a really nice Kekfrankos from Eger. Kekfrankos, also known as Blaufrankisch, is one of the main varietals used in Bull's Blood and is often bottled on its own as well as in red blends. The 2007 J & J Eged Hegy Dulo Kekfrankos is a deep garnet red in color. The nose brings aromas of sweet red and sour cherries with a very pleasant and subtle hint of barnyard. With a sip, you get some of the same cherry flavor as well as some cranberry and strawberry fruit. The fantastic acidity really has the sour cherry and cranberry shine on the finish.
The acidity combined with the medium weight and mild tannins, makes this a very food friendly offering. Having grown up on Hungarian food, I find myself wanting Chicken Paprikas or a nice, traditional Hungarian pork stew to go with this, but it would also pair well with any braised meats like osso bucco or lamb shanks. For a price in the mid $20s, this wine really delivers a lot. Look for it in your favorite wine shop or check it out at http://www.bluedanubewine.com/