In addition to lingering in a thermal bath with a great book, dipping your toes in the calm waters of the great Lake Balaton, and eating fried fish and pickles on the banks of the Danube, nothing says summer in Hungary like sipping a refreshing fröccs, or, wine spritzer. More than beer or fussy fruit cocktails, the fröccs is emblematic of a night or day out in the Hungarian summer.
But one does not just sidle up to the bar and order fröccs. It is not so simple. There is an entire culture of fröccs, and a variation of fröccs for every taste and tolerance. Discovering which one is right for you is a tipsy, fun activity in itself. You will find any number of guides to the multiple variations of fröccs on the internet, but no matter which guide we look at, we still discover variations left off. It’s fair to speculate that there are up to twenty types of fröccs, meaning twenty proportions of wine to water. What they all have in common is that white or rose wine is typically mixed with soda water. But not exclusively, as we will see.
Because Hungarians are endlessly imaginative and industrious, we see those qualities reflected in the colorful names of fröccs. Take for instance, the Hosszúlépés, which translates as a ‘long step’ meaning it is light on the wine and heavy on the water. Conversely, there is the Lámpás, or ‘Lantern’ spritzer, which calls for an astounding 1.5 liters of wine to just 5 dl of soda. If that doesn’t put your lights out, nothing will.
Like many things in Hungary, fröccs culture also has a literary flavor. Take for instance the Krúdy fröccs which was named for Hungarian writer Gyula Krúdy, known for his love of fine food, romance, and Hungarian wine. No lightweight, a Krúdy fröccs requires an astounding nine deciliters of wine mixed with just one deciliter of soda water.
Spritzers in Hungary also deviate from the white wine/ rose formula. A few call for red wine, and the very non-traditional ingredient of Coke, like the Kisvadász, or ‘small hunter’ which requires equal parts red wine and cola. Or for the more adventurous, there is the Újházy-fröccs, which of all things calls for pickle juice along with white wine.
But most people will just enjoy a kis- or nagy-, a small or big fröccs, both of which have proportions similar to the average wine spritzer. It’s just right of the heat of the summer, and still reminds you that you are in Hungary. So enjoy Hungary in the summer, or if you are not here, get a taste of it with an easy to make, hard to forget fröccs.
Flatpack Films has many years of experience dedicated to offering expert servicing. It has brought the best of Hungary to countless brands, agencies, and production companies through its unique locations, exceptionally skilled crews, top of the line equipment and technical solutions. Backed by an impeccable track record, Flatpack Films has worked with world-class clients including Samsung, Samsonite, Toyota, Braun, Chivas Regal and many more - bringing their projects to life through a highly bespoke approach.