Hungary’s furmint grape
Hungary’s furmint seems to be having a bit of a moment. You may not have heard of it yet (and yes, it does sound like a toy for cats), but furmint is a grape variety you’ve quite possibly enjoyed before, without knowing.
The heavenly dessert wines from Tokaji, all marmalade, butterscotch and orange peel, are made from furmint grapes, very late picked for intense sweetness and rendered complex after being shrivelled by the “noble” rot botrytis.
Tokaji has long enjoyed a high-class reputation (“the wine of kings and the king of wines”, Louis XV was said to have called it), but now a few dry versions – inexpensive, light and relatively simple – have started to appear on the high street.
Size of wineyard: 65 hectare
Main Areas: Szenta-völgy, Várdomb, Almástető, Decsi Szőlőhegy, Görögszó, Strázsahegy, Felső-cinka, Porkoláb-völgy, Faluhely, Hidaspetre, Leányvár, Alsónána, Zenta
Typical grape varieties: kékfrankos 17.5 hectare, 17 hectare of Cabernet Franc, Zweigelt 12 hectare, Merlot 10 hectare, 3.5 hectare of Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon 3 hectare, Kadarka 3 hectare, 2.5 hectare of Syrah, Chardonnay 1 hectare, Sauvignon Blanc 0.5 hectare
Annual production: 5-600000 bottle
Estate Size: 148 Acrre
Major vineyards: Jammertal, Star Valley, Devil’s Ditch, Black Mountain, Barren, Bocor, Gonter, City Hill, Mandolás, Várerdő
Typical grape varieties: Portuguese 31 acre, 20.5 acre of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot 21.4 acre, Kékfrankos 15 acre, 23.9 acre of Cabernet Franc, Riesling 9.4 acre, 10.3 acre of Pinot Noir, Syrah 6.1 acre, Hárslevelű 5 acre.
Annual production: 800,000 bottles