2021 September 22.

Three things you should know about Szekszárdi Kékfrankos

Szekszárd is taking Kékfrankos seriously. They are undertaking historical research and clonal experiments to understand this grape variety better and to be able to release even more outstanding wines onto the Hungarian and international markets.

Why Szekszárd?

Kékfrankos is the most planted black variety in Hungary, with more than 8,000 hectares cultivated. Its third most important region is Szekszárd, where it is one of the wine district’s “big three”, i.e. Székszárdi Bikavér, Kékfrankos and Kadarka. Only these are entitled to use the Szekszárd Bottle. The variety feels right at home in the wine district’s calcareous soil and hills criss-crossed with gorges. It reflects the local terroir well, ripening with ease every year, and its good acidity retention is also important in the light of global climate change. So, it’s no wonder that the wineries here see the wine district’s future in it, especially given that high-quality, serious, single-vineyard Kékfrankos from Szekszárd is becoming increasingly popular with consumers.


The Kékfrankos is the most widely planted variety in Hungary


Why is it so popular in the wine district?

Kékfrankos is used in almost all wine styles in Szekszárd and has become the main grape variety over the years. Perhaps the most important thing is that it forms the backbone of Szekszárdi Bikavér, which current regulations lay down should comprise 45% of the blend. Hence, today’s modern Bikavér are fresher, fruitier and more elegant wines. Moreover, there are various types of Kékfrankos to choose from, from rosé through siller and everyday reds, to serious, single-vineyard wines. It also plays an important role in blends other than Bikavér, with its lively acidity and moderate alcohol balancing the fuller-body international varieties in blends.

Gastronomic wildcard

Its diversity makes it a kind of wildcard with food, whether Hungarian cuisine or the most sophisticated fine dining dishes. It balances fatty ingredients nicely, making a good pairing for liver, duck, goose or game. You could also choose pasta with tomato sauce, pizza, layered meat or cabbage dishes, and it works well with beetroot, mushrooms and aubergine too.

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