Somló - Innovation, tradition and age-worthy wines – Kreinbacher

The greatest and most spectacular development in the whole of Somló has taken place at the Kreinbacher Estate. Conveying the shape of a lava flow, the buildings provide a uniform picture, although they all actually serve different functions. The wines and the sparkling wines are created in different buildings. Even the winemaker, György Várszegi, explained that you have to decide as to whether you’re making wine or sparkling wine, and the buildings can help with that as well. 

The state-of-the-art winery boasts among the most modern technology in the country, if not the most modern. For example, they use truly special Coquard presses imported from France for making traditional method sparkling wines. Besides building the new estate headquarters, the old and almost inaccessible roads on the hill have been re-laid, supporting walls have been erected, and from the spring several guest rooms and a bistro are open to guests on the new estate. Out of several hobby plots, Kreinbacher has grown to a 42-hectare estate with more than 200 different topographical numbers (plots). They started to switch to organic grape growing in 2007, which was completed by 2011.

Kreinbacher avoids the use of herbicides while the undergrowth between the rows conditions the grapes outstandingly. It also holds the rainwater and helps biodiversity develop. 90% of the wines go through whole bunch pressing and the majority of fermentation happens spontaneously with indigenous yeast. Working in the modern buildings, the respecting of tradition and innovative thinking walk hand-in-hand for the employees. One of the areas where this can be observed is with the use of oak, which is a basic element of traditional winemaking. They experiment a lot with foreign and Hungarian barrels and they select the barrel according to the grape variety. The French Seguin Moreau barrel, for example, is only coupled with Syrah and certain white wines. The citrus character of the acacia barrel is only given to such aromatic varieties as Hárslevelű. Apart from the rosé, screw cap wines are partly fermented and aged in barrels, and all the members of the premium series are made exclusively in oak and aged for a long time – true to the big Somló wines. They are into experimenting, but the real emphasis is still put on getting to know Somló’s attributes. Sea sediment and basalt, the local varieties, the mineral complexity and one of its related implications: long-term ageing potential. Age-worthy Somló wine is something the Kreinbacher estate strongly believes in. During our latest tasting we were able to experience what great form some of the older vintages are in, so we’ve selected a few of those as well.