Burcak the fermented young Moravian wine that appears on the market several weeks into the start of the grape harvest is once again available in Prague, a treat for connoisseurs and new-comers alike. Of course, Burcak can be something of a wolf in sheep's clothing: its high-sugar and cloudy juice-like content fooling some first-timers into underestimating its punch.
But, as long as you don't overdo it, Moravians will tell you can't expect to be healthy unless you drink at least seven litres of the young wine each year!
Daniela Kolejkova is from the State Food and Agriculture Inspection in Brno; she explains Burcak's allure.
"Czechs but especially Moravians have a very deep, traditional relationship with Burcak, because it is a traditional Moravian beverage. Though Austrians and Germans also produce and consume young wine, only Czechs have Burcak, the name now protected under new legislation within the new EU. Following EU accession the only true Burcak can come strictly from Moravian or Czech grapes."
Under the new legislation consumers themselves are also better protected - better ensured they get the real thing. Suppliers must now designate the regions where Burcak was produced to prevent fake samples - namely watered-down versions - from hitting the market.
That should mean better times all around for consumers for the length of the official Burcak season, which lasts November 30th. Cheers!