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The three main varieties of Tokaj are Furmint, Hárslevelű, and Sárga Muskotály. Further, there are three more authorized varieties: Zéta, Kövérszőlő and Kabar, while experiments are under way to reintroduce Gohér: a one time prominent variety that is now almost extinct.

Vineyards are planted with the authorized varieties in the following overall proportion:

Furmint – 60%

Hárslevelű – 30%

Sárga Muskotály, Zéta, Kövérszőlő, Kabar (combined together) – 10%

Furmint

Furmint is the most common and important variety of the region, although its origins remain unknown. Since Furmint has been grown in the region at least as long ago as Aszú wines have been made, it is certainly fair to refer to it as an indigenous grape variety. The Furmint vine is vigorous; producing medium sized berries in bunches that are closely packed. As a late ripener, it is left on the vine into the second half of October, providing high sugar concentration while preserving high acidity and above all it is particularly prone to botrytis. All these qualities predestined it to become the major grape variety of the region. Although Furmint is still the essential component in the great sweet wines, dry Furmint is fast becoming highly appreciated by connoisseurs.

It is also known as Fehér Furmint, Mosler, Moslavac, Posipel, Sipon, Szigeti, Somszőlő.

Hárslevelű

Hárslevelű is the other key indigenous variety of the region. Although Hárslevelű is as vigorous as Furmint, it is difficult for botrytis to attack it in drier years since the berries hang much more loosely on the bunches and have thicker skin. Despite this, when the autumn is wet and rainy, botrytis is less likely to turn into unwanted rot while wine produced from Hárslevelű is also more aromatic than that from the Furmint.

It is also called Lipovina or Lindenblättriger in German speaking areas.

Sárga Muskotály

A widespread variety in many vineyards across Europe, Sárga Muskotály

has long been considered native to Tokaj and its clones. As a late ripener, it is harvested at the end of September for dry or late harvest wines. Probably the most aromatic variety of Tokaj with a fine balance of sugar and acidity.

It is also called Muscat (blanc) à petits grains, Muscat Lunel, Musdkat Zoti, Moscato Bianco, Zoruna, Gelber Muskateller, Muskat Zlty. 

Zéta (before 1999 named as Oremus)

The crossing of Furmint and Bouvier was introduced in 1951 and authorized in 1990 while its former name, Oremus, was changed into Zeta in 1999. Its main asset is a particular aptitude for high sugar concentrations, early ripening and susceptibility for botrytis.

Kövérszőlő

This indigenous variety of Tokaj almost entirely disappeared after the phylloxera epidemic of the 19th century. Kövérszőlő is characterized by its fairly big berries, something also implied by its name, Kövérszőlő, which translates as fat grape. It shows its best on dry and windy slopes.

Kabar (known as Tarcal 10 experimental variety)

The crossing of the Hárslevelű and Bouvier was authorized in 2006. With a relatively low yield, it ripens as early as the Zeta, produces high sugar and is prone to botrytis. Due to its thick skin, it is fairly resistant to late autumn rains.

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