2022 has been the year of international wines.
I needed to take this photo for the gram…so found myself sipping Aszú at 11am on a weekday morning. Life is tough.. 😏
Undoubtedly sweet, high acidity, full bodied but the acid keeps it bright and light, medium alcohol (12.5%!!), and one of the joys of these sweet wines is immersing yourself in each and every sip and letting it linger whilst you contemplate the sheer pleasure. It’s not the most impressive Aszú I’ve tried but it is outstanding!
Viti & Vini:
You’ve got to admire how these wines have been made in the same way for centuries. A blend of Furmint, Hárslevelü, Zéta and Sárgamuskotály grapes are handpicked in 2-3 rounds from mid-September to late November to ensure that grapes with noble rot are harvested. The Aszú berries are macerated for 2 days until swollen and able to release their concentrated sugar and flavour through gentle pressing. Fermentation takes place in new Hungarian oak barrels and can take up to 2 months to complete, leaving a wine with 156 g/L of residual sugar. The wines are then aged for 2 to 3 years in 136 and 200 litre barrels.
First mentioned as far back as 1571, these beautiful Tokaj wines have enjoyed centuries of fame, and were one of the first to classify their vineyards to create controlled appellations in the 18th century. It is astounding how they are still such spectacular wines. For me, these have been so much more impressive than any Sauternes…and I’m very happy to reserve a few spaces on my shelves for as many Tokaji’s as I can source.
Find the wine:
Thanks to Great Domaines for stocking this – they’re not easily available in SA but totally worth the splurge if it fits your wine budget…and you can lay them down for ages.