While Eger is most known for its red wines, thanks to the reputation of Egri Bikaver, its famous “bull’s blood” wine, white-wine varieties make up nearly half of the region’s vines. To give the region’s white wines more recognition, a coalition of Eger vintners introduced Egri Csillag in 2010. The name, “Star of Eger,” nods to the lights lit by watchmen stationed along the northern border of the city to help travelers find their way to safety during the Turkish occupation.
By definition, Egri Csillag wines must be based on Carpathian varieties, with no single variety making up more than half of the blend. Tibor Gál Jr, who has run his family’s winery since his father died in 2005, has been one of the blend’s foremost proponents, producing a version since 2010. His 2018 blends királyleányka, olaszrizling, szürkebarát, traminer, viognier, zenit and both pinot and sauvignon blanc, all vinified in stainless-steel tanks. It’s an immediate pleasure, earthy and rich, with fruit-skin tannins and spice balancing its tropical-fruit zeal. As fruity and mouthfilling as it is, it finishes cleanly, with a refreshing edge of acidity.
Gál Tibor 2018 Hungary Egri Csillag (Best Buy)
Every week, our editors highlight a wine that intrigued them in our blind panel tastings, expanding on their tasting note in this space. These are entirely editorial choices; there are no paid placements. Subscribers can also access the original tasting note by searching here.
is W&S’s editor at large and covers the wines of the Mediterranean and Central and Eastern Europe for the magazine.
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