Wednesday, 28 January 2015


Tokaji (pronounced Tok-eye) is the name given to wines from the Tokaj wine region in Hungary.

Tokaji is characterised by its sweet flavour and this sweetness is all down to the the thickness of the Furmint grapes. They're traditionally grown on a small plateau, 1500ft above sea level.

The Furmint grapes begin maturation with thick skins, but as they ripen the skins become thinner, and transparent. This allows the sun to penetrate the grape and evaporate much of the liquid inside, producing a higher concentration of sugar.

Other types of grape mature to the point of bursting, the Furmint differs in that it will grow a second skin which seals it from rot. This has the effect of concentrating the grape's natural sugars and producing Tokaji's characterisitic sweet flavour which makes it ideal as a dessert wine.

There are many different types of Tokaji wine, the most famous is the Aszu. This topaz coloured wine is known world-wide as Tokay.

If the word Tokay sounds familiar to you maybe it's because you've heard it mentioned in Phillip Pullman's His Dark Material trilogy. It was Lord Asriel's tipples of choice in the Golden Compass film.

Want to read more on Hungary's famous alcohol? Read our post on pustza and learn how you can make one too!

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