100% Kekfrankos, otherwise known as Blaufrankisch, which is otherwise known as: “Errrrrmmmm….I have no idea how to pronounce that wine/grape…I’ll just have a glass of Merlot…”
- Holy hell! There’s very few times when I look at a wine label and think: “Yup! I’ve got no idea what I’m looking at here…” In-fact, the only recognizable thing on this label is Blaufrankisch, which you may-or-may-not have tried via the fairly-widely-distributed: Shooting Star “Blue Franc” by Steele winery.
- As you can probably guess, Kekfrankos aka Blaufrankisch hasn’t made too many successful roads outside its native German, Austrian and Hungarian wine growing regions. The difficulty of pronunciation might be the problem, but personally I relish pronouncing these types of grapes, ESPECIALLY in polite company. This, since I have a particular penchant for adopting a ridiculously-thick-and-angry-sounding German accent when doing so: “KEEEEKFRANKOOOSSSS!!!!”
- The main man, winemaker Jozsef Bock received his 1st “Hungarian Winemaker of the Year” honor in 1997 and “Winery of the Year” in 2007, honors which he has proudly hanging over his fireplace. I made that last part up…
- As tends to be the case with a great number of European wineries, the Bock family has been making wine for multiple generations, since the early 18th century in-fact. The family were actually kicked-out of Hungary and had their land taken away shortly after World War II (since they’re of German descent). But Bock’s father Antal was having none of it! Antal stuck around and bought back a small section of his family’s original vineyard and started to restore the winery to its former glory.
- Today, the Bock family (Jozsef’s daughter, son-in-law, son and wife) are all involved in the business. It always amazes me when I read about these “winery families.” If my family banded-together to form a winery, we would have surely killed each other before we even banged-out our first vintage…
- Jozsef Bock is clearly a big control freak! He decided a while ago that he wanted a hand in EVERY part of his wine production; so-much-so, that he actually grows his own Hungarian oak trees, just so his wine barrel cooper can make wine barrels to his exact specs.
- The Villany wine region of Hungary, located in south-west corner of the country near the Croatian border, is noted mainly for its red wines made from Kekfrankos, Cabernet Franc and Portugieser.
- Winemaking in Hungary dates back more than two thousand years.
- To this day, the most well-known Hungarian wines to have made their way out of the country are the Tokaji dessert wines.
Immediately upon popping the cork and taking my first sip it reminds me of Cru Beaujolais, but as it opens up quickly in the glass it gets darker and a little earthier than I was expecting, and not in a bad way…
Solid blueberry and plum on the front end, with leather, pencil lead and cedar running all the way through. Dry in the tannins department and certainly begs for food. This is/was my first memorable Hungarian red wine, I do have to say! If you’re looking for a wine that’s “a little off the beaten path,” this isn’t it, simply for the fact that the beaten path is about 10 miles behind you with the Bock Kekfrankos…but maybe you’ve spent too long on that path anyway…
It would be hard to go wrong with bratwurst and/or hamburgers, but also think about grilled lamb, pizza and strong hard cheeses.
Sold as part of a three-pack ($59.95) from mypreferredwines.com
My friends at My Preferred Wines have actually been quite gracious and given me my very own 10% off coupon code for your purchase of this already discounted deal! Use coupon code: FLWine10 at the checkout for your discount.