Sandwiched between Austria and Romania, Hungary is central to Europe and is considered a very important wine region due to its history and production. Hungary’s capital is Budapest, a city that is known as being so beautiful that it tops lists for the best places to photograph in Europe. The architecture is charming, the city is safe and the drinks are cheap (meaning depending on the quality of wine that’s ordered, an average glass may cost around $2 US). Although Hungary is flourishing now, it did face some challenges both to its agriculture and its wine industry. During the 1870’s, Hungary battled an invasion of phylloxera, an aphid that eats roots and grapes to survive. These insects can decimate an entire vineyard and even destroy any surrounding vineyards. The phylloxera severely damaged Hungary’s most famous wine region of Tokaj (Tokaj-Hegyalja), where Tokay (Tokaji) is produced. Tokay is Hungary’s best known sweet white wine which is very popular on a global scale. The vineyards of Tokay were rebuilt up until World War l and ll where they once again were damaged. Just when it seemed the outlook for wine couldn’t get any worse, in 1949 Hungary was forced into Communist rule and the existing vineyards were confiscated. Without proper care, this caused grape quality to decline, shortcuts to be taken, and for the prestigious wines of Tokay to be newly blended in large cellars. In 1989 Hungary switched to being a democratic republic and with this its wine quality was restored. Many of the historic wine cellars dating back to 13th can be toured in the present day. Some of the cellars are just as photogenic as the surrounding country-side due to the walls being hand-carved in volcanic rock.
9.773 million (2019)
93,030 sq km (35,919 sq mi)