Blaufränkisch (also known as Lemberger) is a black-skinned grape variety that has a number of synonyms in Europe and the United States. It can be used to make varietal red wine, rosé, and can be added to blends, contributing high acid, tannin and deep coloring. Blackberries, red cherries and redcurrants are common flavor descriptors associated with Blaufränkisch wine.
The variety is widely planted in Burgenland, Austria, where it is often blended with its offspring, Zweigelt. Germany, Italy, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Romania and Bulgaria also produce their own versions of Blaufränkisch wine. It is commercially produced in Washington and New York, where is known as Lemberger.
Blaufränkisch is thought to be a descendent of the French grape Gouais Blanc. This theory is reinforced by the fact that many of its synonyms translate to ‘blue French’, in reference to the variety’s coloring and origin. Blaufränkisch buds early, ripens late and delivers generous yields, but needs a warm environment to fully mature. The best examples of the variety can be aged in oak and cellared for many years.
Synonyms include: Lemberger, Limberger, Blauer Limberger, Kekfrankos, Frankovka, Modra Frankinja, Franconia, Nagyburgundi, Gamé, Burgund Mare.
Related grape varieties include: Gouais Blanc.
Food matches include:
Europe: Stewed brown hare (Feldhase); fried goose liver (libamáj)
Americas: Lentil soup with smoked ham hock
Africa/Middle East: Black-eyed pea, black olive and tomato salad