Kadarka is a grape variant cultivated in the region of Northern Bulgaria since the ancient times. This grape is primarily used for the process of red wine making and is one of the notable grapes in the Hungarian winemaking industry.
This grape is also referred to as Gamza (Gumza) in many countries. Along with this, this grape is also known as Cadarca in Serbia and Romania, or Neusiedlersee in eastern Austria along with some countries in the west.
Kadarka grapes also referred to as Kadarka Blau (Blau means the blue colour which the grape’s skin possesses) in the local language areas well known a grape of Hungary as its other notable variant the Bikaver.
And it wouldn’t be wrong to say that this grape variant gave this grape the international presence amongst the winemaking countries of the world.
Viticulture of Kadarka Grapes
Kadarka grapes have bunches which are conical or cylindrical,l with a large bunch size. These bunches often appear compact and single winged.
These bunches contain grapes, which are small and spherical and the bunch looks compact. When the bunch is deformed though, it produces grapes having a thin skin, frail look and a thick waxy boom with a blue or a black colour.
Kadarka grapes are a late ripening variety having its ripening season starting from the end of September to early October.
The yield from Kadarka grape vines is approximately 4 to 6 kgs. These grapes are highly susceptible to weather and mildew and if the conditions are adverse, the berries tend to crack.
Hence, these grapes are better off in an airy, hilly area having soils which are rich and lightly drained. To achieve a high quality Kadarka grape, it is a pre-condition that the grapevines need to be tightly managed and the lure for higher yields is resisted.
Characteristics of Kadarka Grapes
These grape variants typically have a sugar content of 19-21.8% typically giving the wine its dense ruby colour and a red fruit flavour which is dominated by the taste of raspberry and red cherry.
The grapes are dark blue to black in colour and have a thin and a frail skin. These grapes have a different ripening season and to a large extent depend on the area where it is cultivated.
The amount of sugar present in the grapes causes its maturity and hence the grapes grown in the area located in North West Bulgaria may have a different ripening to say a grape located in southern Bulgaria.
These grapes are extremely prone to diseases and may develop fungi like the grey moulds if the weather is humid. This grape tends to prefer cooler a climate.
Characteristics of Kadarka Wines
Kadarka wines are popularly used in the production of table or dessert wines. These wines appear to be full bodied and are harmonious.
However, the big concern with these grapes is that they to a large extent depend on the climatic conditions and if the climatic conditions are cool, but not very cool, then these grapes produce the best of wine.
These grapes are typically suited for the autumn season and when the autumn is warm and dry, the wines produced using these grapes give a vivid, ruby colour, not very dense along with a pleasant taste of red fruits like raspberry.
Along with these fruity flavours, this wine also gives a distinctly fresh taste with mild tannicity, almost appearing delicate.
Kadarka Wine flavours and aromas
Wines from Kadarka grape have special aromas and characteristics. When it comes to the colour, these grapes have a dense colour while offering the flavour of cherry and blackberry along with typical spiciness.
These wines also give out a rich and a complex flavour of tobacco, black pepper and leather and often used as a blending partner with other wines
Food Pairings for Kadarka Wine
Kadarka wine really goes well with the Italian and the local cuisine. It also tastes good with the spicy food of Spain.
When it comes to pizzas and pastas, this wine feels as if it is perfectly made for them.
This wine also tastes good with roasted foods and grilled vegetables having a lot of pepper on them.
Editor-in-Chief and Wine Writer
Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂