Franom Hordóválogatás (Cabernet Franc) – Havás & Timár Winery
Villány is not the only Hungarian region which produces notable single varietal Cabernet Franc wines. Cabernet Franc also thrives in the cooler climate and volcanic soils of Eger, which provide the impressive structure-building acidic backbone. Winemaker Balázs Havas is a big fan of this grape (Franom means “my Franc”). This wine has the herbaceous, leafy note which is evident in the best Cabernet Francs, as well as juicy fruitiness and plenty of spiciness. There are pronounced aromas and flavors of eucalyptus, tobacco, autumn leaves, cassis, black currants, black cherries, cloves, vanilla, dried cherries, plums, and truffles. There is so much going on in this wine—even a bit of Worcestershire sauce and A1 sauce umami flavors. It has an amazing lively and long acidity, with a long and refined finish. This unfiltered Franom Hordóválogatás (Franom barrel selection) is a more concentrated version of the winemaker’s favorite Franom. For this wine, he chose the three best barrels of Franom, and continued to age them. It has been aged in new oak barrels for 21 months, with an additional two more years of bottle aging before release. This is a really complex and elegant wine, with a smooth and satiny texture, and fresh tannins. It’s a powerful wine, perfect for your finest steak. It really benefits from decanting. Just 880 bottles of this wine were produced, and only in the best vintages.
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*Prices shown include Hungarian VAT (27%). Final prices are calculated based on the VAT of your shipping country.
One of Hungary’s red wine bastions, Eger, the home of Bikavér (aka Bull’s Blood), also boasts a diverse geological make-up which includes rhyolite tuff. It is also Hungary’s northernmost red-wine-producing region. Historic vineyards planted on these volcanic rocks make some of the biggest, fieriest wines in the region. As in Tokaj, this tuff lends itself perfectly to the carving of cellars. It hosts 99 percent of Eger’s cellars, including networks of passages dozens of miles long and the famous cellars under the city’s fortified castle.
Although historically a white wine land like its volcanic counterparts, red varieties displaced the whites and finally after the blight of phylloxera, Eger’s flagship red blend, Egri Bikavér, attained a worldwide reputation at the start of the 20th century. Winemakers here take this traditional blend seriously.
It has improved tremendously and has little in common with those past Bikavér’s which were exported to the West during the Communist-era of mass-produced wine. Varietals that find their way into Bikavér are Kékfrankos (Blaufrankish), Pinot Noir, Portugieser, Merlot, and Kadarka, and all of these are also bottled as single varietal wines.
At the start of the 21st century, Bikavér gained a white partner, Egri Csillag (‘Star of Eger’). Approximately 50 percent of the region’s vineyards are planted with white grapes and as no one variety dominates, so it was logical to make Egri Csillag a blend, in keeping with the region’s traditions. It is a very variable blend based on Carpathian-basin varieties, such as Olaszrizling, Hárslevelű, Leányka, Királyleányka, Zengő, Zenit and some Hungarian crossings. A minimum of four of these varieties must be included and make up at least 50 percent of the blend and each must represent a minimum of 5 percent. The blend may also include up to 30 percent of fragrant Muscat varieties, such as Cserszegi Füszeres, Zefír, Irsai Oliver, Tramini and Muscat Ottonel. With their blend of history, volcanic minerality, and native varietals, there’s a lot to explore in Eger’s cellars.
Havas & Timár Winery is a small winery in Eger, founded by two long-time friends—Balázs Havas and László Tímár—in 2011. Balázs, a Budapest native, is the winemaker and oversees the vineyards. The pair started out with no vineyards of their own. But today they own one hectare (2.5 acres) of land in Eger and they buy the rest of their grapes from local growers, with the quality strict controlled by Balázs. Before switching to winemaking (and studying it at Corvinus University in Budapest) Balázs had a career in hospitality, with nature being a particular passion of his. He loves that winemaking allows him to follow both his passion for nature and for wine.
|Country||1-3 bottles||4-6 bottles||7-12 bottles|
|Austria||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Belgium||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Bulgaria||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Croatia||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Czech Republic||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Denmark||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Estonia||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Finland||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|France||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Germany||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Greece (mainland)||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|Hungary (outside of Budapest)||2,500 HUF||3,500 HUF||4,500 HUF|
|Hungary (Budapest)||2,500 HUF||3,500 HUF||Free delivery for orders over 20,000 HUF|
|Ireland||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Italy||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Latvia||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Lithuania||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Luxembourg||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|
|Netherlands||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Poland||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Portugal||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|Romania||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Slovakia||7,800 HUF||8,300 HUF||9,500 HUF|
|Slovenia||10,200 HUF||10,500 HUF||12,200 HUF|
|Spain||19,900 HUF||21,200 HUF||23,800 HUF|
|Sweden||13,800 HUF||14,500 HUF||15,900 HUF|