Royal Tokaji

Tokaj, Hungary

Betsek, 6 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 1999

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  • Introduction

    • Single Vineyard
      First Growth, 6 Puttonyos

  • Vineyard Profile

    • Named after an ancient Magyar family name, the Betsek (bet-shek) Vineyard is shaped like a crescent moon and faces northeast. The area where the vineyard is located is typically cold — lower portions have been known to freeze in the spring. The black volcanic topsoil contributes to the mineral and lovely black pepper characters in the wine.

    • Appellation: Tokaj
    • Vine Age: Planted 1972–1977
    • Elevation: Average of 460 feet
  • Vintage Report

    • There were two hailstorms in Tokaj in August. As a result, the remaining healthy grapes developed great intensity and concentration. Royal Tokaji believes that 1999 is on a par with the 1993 vintage, the first outstanding year for Tokaj after the fall of the Iron Curtain. Whereas the 1993 vintage had impressive concentration and structured richness, the hallmark of the 1999 vintage is one of unbelievable acidity wrapped in perfectly balanced fruit.

    • Harvest Date(s): Late September to late October
  • Vinification

    • Barrel Aging: 4.5 years in old Hungarian oak
    • Bottled: May 1, 2004
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 50% Furmint, 45 Hárslevelú, 5% Muscat
    • Production (in cases): 888 cases (6/500ml)
    • Cases Imported: 100
    • Alcohol: 10.3%
    • TA: 15.7g/L
    • RS: 185g/L
  • Tasting Notes

    • The 1999 vintage is an outstanding one rivaling 1993. While the 1993 Betsek is emerging as one of the richest of the vintage, the 1999 Betsek celebrates the excellent vintage and the earthiness of the vineyard. On the nose, there are distinctive aromas of botrytis followed by notes of mineral, caramel and dried apricot. The palate exhibits peppermint, candied orange peel and fresh lemon. The wine’s high acidity – typical for the 1999 vintage – along with the peppermint flavors, give the Betsek a refreshing quality.

    • Serving Suggestions: Serve slightly chilled (50–54°F) in a small port glass or a glass of similar size (there are approximately eight two-ounce servings per 500ml bottle). Tokaji Aszú wines are wonderful on their own as an apéritif or as a digestif, with cigars and petits fours. These wines also pair well with a wide variety of foods, including foie gras, fruit tarts, chocolate desserts and blue and soft cheeses.



  • Betsek, 6 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 1999 – 94 points – Wine Spectator Online

    “Dried apricot, herbs and orange peel aromas and flavors abound, while the crisp structure keeps this racy. It’s concentrated, despite its ethereal profile, with a lingering finish. Furmint, Hárslevelü and Muscat.”

  • Betsek, 6 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 1999 – 89 points – Wine & Spirits

    “...stands out for its intense earthiness, a characteristic that the winery attributes to the low altitude of this vineyard and its black, volcanic soil...flavors veer toward the savory, more papaya than pineapple, salted caramel over brown sugar.”

  • Betsek, 6 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 1999 – 93 points – Wine Enthusiast

    “Already developing toffee and coffee notes, this wine still shows plenty of citrus, honey, dried apricot and fig, with a hint of nuttiness on the nose. Syrupy and round, the citrusy acids maintain a beautiful harmony.”

  • Betsek, 6 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 1999 – Gold Medal World Wine Awards – Decanter

    “Medium gold dried peel and marmalade on the nose, butter chunky marmalade on the palate, palate full and rich with lovely dried and raising peels and fruits”