What Kind of Wine Is Bulls Blood?￼
Bulls Blood is Hungary’s most famous dry red wine. It is a premium quality blended red wine, based on mainly traditional Hungarian red grape varieties. The base wine is Kékfrankos (Blaufrankische). The second most important variety in Bulls Blood is Kadarka, which is another classic local Hungarian red grape variety. Other varieties are also present in Bulls Blood, but in a lot smaller proportions. These include: Bíbor kadarka, Blauburger, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Kadarka, Kékfrankos, Kékoportó, Menoire, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Turán, Zweigelt.
What is bull blood wine?
Bulls Blood wine is a premium red cuvée wine. Bulls Blood translates to ‘Bikavér‘ in Hungarian. It is actually a Community Brand. There are very strict regulations in place for a premium Hungarian red cuvée to qualify for the name Bulls Blood.
Bulls Blood can only be made in two wine regions, out of the 22 wine regions in total of Hungary. These are Szekszárd and Eger. Hence there is a legendary ‘battle’ amongst the two types of Bulls Bloods amongst Hungarian wine makers: The Egri Bikavér / Bulls Blood and the Szekszard Bulls Blood. Indeed, it has become a very popular and exciting tasting exercise to compare them side by side, with tasting notes, etc, one from each wine region.
The rules for Eger and Szekszárd Bulls Blood making also vary slightly. These rules set out exactly what the base wine should be, and in what percentage, how many local and other varieties can be used in the wine, and exactly what percentages these varieties need to be present. Furthermore, they also set the length of barrel ageing, followed by the length of bottle ageing during the wine making process.
The the legend and history of Hungarian Bulls Blood dates back to the battle between the Hungarians and the Ottomans in the 16th Century.
The name Bikavér has been cited in Hungarian poems, and is deeply rooted in Hungarian literature and history. Bulls Blood therefore carries a cultural significance. Hence the quality control measures very strict to for a premium red cuvée to qualify for a Community Brand with such cultural significance.