Hungarian Syrah with a nod to Northern Rhone – Losonci 2018 from Mátra

I’m a long time proponent of Syrah in Hungary. I believe it’s more suitable for our climate than other French varieties. Syrah could produce some of the country’s best red wines and it could also make captivating everyday wines -Cabernet and Merlot fail on that, among others.

Most of the red focused Hungarian wine regions already proved that they can produce outstanding, in some cases world class Syrah. Bock from Villány, Takler from Szekszárd, Gróf Buttler from Eger, Weninger from Sopron – a few vintages of these Syrahs were benchmarks. In my opinion Somló’s best wine is also made from Syrah (by Kreinbacher), even though the region is famous for it’s white wines.

The volcanic region of Mátra does not have considerable plantings of Syrah, and what I tasted so far were mostly forgettable examples. But local hero Bálint Losonci just released his maiden vintage, and it is a game changer.

At 12.5% alcohol, this is a beautifully balanced, delicate version of Syrah. Akin to feminine Cote-Roties perhaps, it’s loaded with black pepper. A truly cool climate wine, yet without green edges. Hardly medium bodied, effortless and so drinkable. Finesse over power. Not the most complex wine, but it has that specialness that only few wines have in the world. Such a distinct character, exciting stuff.

Rating: outstanding wine, in its class: 9/10. (or 7 points on our own 10 points scale, 90 in Parker’s rating system).
Price: 5400-6000 Forints (retailers are Borfalu Bortéka, Mitiszol, Artizan).
Value: Great.
Tasted: November, 2019.
Source: sample.
Drinking window: ready now.


[This post is re-published from my personal blog.]