There is always going to be customer demand for light, fruity, refreshing wines. In the summer heat wines made of olaszrizling, cserszegi fűszeres, riesling, sauvignon blanc or viognier offer welcome refreshment often in the form of spritzer (or ’fröccs’ as known in Hungary). Local winemakers prefer early ripening varieties with good acidity with an eye on avoiding overripeness. White kadarka is a local speciality with a long tradition in the wine region but one that is not produced in every vintage. For sparkling wines both aromatic and non-aromatic varieties are used but overall their significance in Szekszárd is marginal.
Szekszárd Whites, Rosés and Sillers
Its relentless rise in popularity worldwide is not the only reason why rosés are made in Szekszárd too; in a predominantly red grape producing region making rosé wines is an almost logical necessity. Almost every vintage is suitable for making these well-liked and widely popular wines with overripeness being the major stumbling block. Kékfrankos is the most widely used variety thanks to its acidity but kadarka, Bordeaux varieties and certain local varieties can also yield appealing rosés. With hand-harvested, healthy grapes making premium quality rosés is also a viable option. These rosés have a longer lifespan and can be enjoyed for several years. This is a wine that can have many uses in gastronomy, it goes well with lighter meat dishes, salads, pasta, vegetables and vegetarian dishes to name but a few.
Siller is a red wine with a very short maceration lasting just one or two days. In Szekszárd because of the Swabian connection it is better known as ’fuchsli’ or ’fuxli’. Siller has a long tradition here and can be considered a local speciality as there are few other places in Hungary where it is produced. Local winemakers have set themselves the goal to steal the limelight from the sometimes bland rosés and divert the customers’ attention to sillers. The best varieties for making siller wines are kékfrankos and kadarka due to their acidity and spicy aromas. Sillers are typically more substantial and last longer than rosés. A well-chilled siller can provide joyful refreshment in summer and is also great as spritzer. A true jolly joker in gastronomy sillers are a perfect match for classical Hungarian dishes with their spicy, paprika flavours but work similarly well with Italian tomato-based dishes too.