2018 Heimann & Fiai Kadarka

Szekszárd, Hungary

2018 Heimann & Fiai Kadarka

The 2018 vintage marks the beginning of a dual Heimann family approach. Heimann and Fiai (Heimann and Sons) and Heimann Családi (Heimann Family). The Heimann family has been pioneering in bringing many clones of Kadarka (and some Kékfrankos as well) back to life from the verge of extinction during Communism. This is a grape that once covered over 60,000 hectares in Hungary was less than 400 hectares in the early 1990s. Zoltán Jr. has been particularly drawn to this part of the business. In addition to spearheading Kadarka research and planting, Zoltán Sr. and his wife Ágnes had also built an impressive business centered around Bordeaux varieties, some Viognier, and even a little Sagrantino. These have been iconic wines for the estate and have shown fidelity to the Szeskzárd appellation for over 20 years. With 20+ years of lessons learned about which clones work best and where they should be planted, it’s finally become time for Heimann & Fiai to focus exclusively on Kadarka and Kékfrankos. Along with conversion to organic farming, the winemaking also reflects a different approach geared towards freshness and aromatics. Multiple passes for picking, using more whole clusters, open vat fermentation, less extraction, and moving the wine manually in lieu of pumps. All fermentation are spontaneous, zero fining, coarsely filtered if at all, and a minimal use of SO2 at bottling. They are also aging wines in clay in addition to Hungarian oak and stainless steel.

VINEYARDS

The Szekszárd appellation was originally established by the Celts, flourished under the Romans and survived Turkish occupation due to the high tax revenue the wines generated. Once the Turks were pushed out, modern day Serbians were being pushed north by said Turks and brought the Kadarka grape with them. the very wine savvy Swabians were also incentivized to resettle the area. Where the Serbians brought a key red grape, the Swabians brought superior winemaking skills. Their influence is still felt today. Case in point, the Heimann family is intensely proud of their Swabian roots and have been making wine here since 1758. Up until this point, the appellation was almost entirely white wine. Since then, Kékfrankos and a variety of Bordeaux varieties have taken firmly to the region. They survived under Communism while many of the native white and red grapes did not fair so well, namely Kadarka. Heimann farms roughly 23 hectares spread over the Baranya, Porkoláb and Iván Valleys in addition to some rare hillside plantings on Batti. The soil is overwhelmingly loess in Szekszárd, but you can also find Terra Rosa (iron rich soil also dominant in Istria, Croatia) if you get deep enough. If you’re approaching the appellation from the Great Plain to the East, you first hit the River Danube and then the first hills are Szekszárd. It’s a fairly dramatic change in the landscape and an obvious place for multiple exposures. Currently most plantings are Kékfrankos with smaller amounts of Merlot, Cab Franc, Tannat, Sagrantino (from Umbria!) and now more than ever re-plantings of Kadarka are underway.

WINE MAKING

All fermentation are spontaneous, zero fining, coarsely filtered if at all, and a minimal use of SO2 at bottling. They are also aging wines in clay in addition to Hungarian oak and stainless steel.

NOTES & PAIRINGS

The Heimann family continues to narrow down what, where and how with Kadarka. A grape that once covered over 60,000 hectares in Hungary was less than 400 hectares post Phylloxera and Communism. They’ve been narrowing down the clonal selection, farming organically, and are now narrowing down specific sites. While usually very Pinot like in terms of weight and structure, in 2018 they had to dodge some impending rain in September and harvested earlier than expected. They were mowing cover crops low and even dropping leaves to get it ready. After spontaneous in stainless steel then 5 months in 10hl and 50hl oak casks, this is the most elegant and ethereal Kadarka yet. More like old school Poulsard albeit with Hungarian herbal cherry and spice.

ANALYTICS & PRONUNCIATION

PRODUCER: Heimann & Fiai
APPELLATION: Szekszárd (Sek­Sard)
VINTAGE: 2018
GRAPE COMPOSITION: 100% Kadarka
CLIMATE: Cool continental with dry warm summers
SOILS: Mainly loess with Terra Rossa
MACERATION & AGING: aged 5 months in big wooden barrels.
ALCOHOL: 12%
RESIDUAL SUGAR: 1 g/l
ACIDITY: 5.2 g/l

2018 Heimann & Fiai Kadarka

Szekszárd, Hungary

The 2018 vintage marks the beginning of a dual Heimann family approach. Heimann and Fiai (Heimann and Sons) and Heimann Családi (Heimann Family). The Heimann family has been pioneering in bringing many clones of Kadarka (and some Kékfrankos as well) back to life from the verge of extinction during Communism. This is a grape that once covered over 60,000 hectares in Hungary was less than 400 hectares in the early 1990s. Zoltán Jr. has been particularly drawn to this part of the business. In addition to spearheading Kadarka research and planting, Zoltán Sr. and his wife Ágnes had also built an impressive business centered around Bordeaux varieties, some Viognier, and even a little Sagrantino. These have been iconic wines for the estate and have shown fidelity to the Szeskzárd appellation for over 20 years. With 20+ years of lessons learned about which clones work best and where they should be planted, it’s finally become time for Heimann & Fiai to focus exclusively on Kadarka and Kékfrankos. Along with conversion to organic farming, the winemaking also reflects a different approach geared towards freshness and aromatics. Multiple passes for picking, using more whole clusters, open vat fermentation, less extraction, and moving the wine manually in lieu of pumps. All fermentation are spontaneous, zero fining, coarsely filtered if at all, and a minimal use of SO2 at bottling. They are also aging wines in clay in addition to Hungarian oak and stainless steel.

VINEYARDS

The Szekszárd appellation was originally established by the Celts, flourished under the Romans and survived Turkish occupation due to the high tax revenue the wines generated. Once the Turks were pushed out, modern day Serbians were being pushed north by said Turks and brought the Kadarka grape with them. the very wine savvy Swabians were also incentivized to resettle the area. Where the Serbians brought a key red grape, the Swabians brought superior winemaking skills. Their influence is still felt today. Case in point, the Heimann family is intensely proud of their Swabian roots and have been making wine here since 1758. Up until this point, the appellation was almost entirely white wine. Since then, Kékfrankos and a variety of Bordeaux varieties have taken firmly to the region. They survived under Communism while many of the native white and red grapes did not fair so well, namely Kadarka. Heimann farms roughly 23 hectares spread over the Baranya, Porkoláb and Iván Valleys in addition to some rare hillside plantings on Batti. The soil is overwhelmingly loess in Szekszárd, but you can also find Terra Rosa (iron rich soil also dominant in Istria, Croatia) if you get deep enough. If you’re approaching the appellation from the Great Plain to the East, you first hit the River Danube and then the first hills are Szekszárd. It’s a fairly dramatic change in the landscape and an obvious place for multiple exposures. Currently most plantings are Kékfrankos with smaller amounts of Merlot, Cab Franc, Tannat, Sagrantino (from Umbria!) and now more than ever re-plantings of Kadarka are underway.

WINE MAKING

All fermentation are spontaneous, zero fining, coarsely filtered if at all, and a minimal use of SO2 at bottling. They are also aging wines in clay in addition to Hungarian oak and stainless steel.

2018 Heimann & Fiai Kadarka

NOTES & PAIRINGS

The Heimann family continues to narrow down what, where and how with Kadarka. A grape that once covered over 60,000 hectares in Hungary was less than 400 hectares post Phylloxera and Communism. They’ve been narrowing down the clonal selection, farming organically, and are now narrowing down specific sites. While usually very Pinot like in terms of weight and structure, in 2018 they had to dodge some impending rain in September and harvested earlier than expected. They were mowing cover crops low and even dropping leaves to get it ready. After spontaneous in stainless steel then 5 months in 10hl and 50hl oak casks, this is the most elegant and ethereal Kadarka yet. More like old school Poulsard albeit with Hungarian herbal cherry and spice.

ANALYTICS & PRONUNCIATION

PRODUCER: Heimann & Fiai
APPELLATION: Szekszárd (Sek­Sard)
VINTAGE: 2018
GRAPE COMPOSITION: 100% Kadarka
CLIMATE: Cool continental with dry warm summers
SOILS: Mainly loess with Terra Rossa
MACERATION & AGING: aged 5 months in big wooden barrels.
ALCOHOL: 12%
RESIDUAL SUGAR: 1 g/l
ACIDITY: 5.2 g/l