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Tokaji: a wine for HK connoisseurs?

One Tokaji producer thinks the Hungarian region’s wines, particularly the famous sweet Aszú, should be finding space among the cellars of knowledgeable Asian collectors.

Holdvolgy1Pascal Demko, owner of the Holdvölgy winery in the famous region, told the drinks business that, as a one of the world’s great wine styles, Tokaji deserves to be getting more attention in Asia but that it will have to be built on gaining credibility through reliable quality and a focus on top restaurants.

“These are wines for collecting and they can age and develop for hundreds of years,” he said.

As with Domäne Wachau, Demko and his winery have an uphill struggle when it comes to raising awareness of the wine and the region and this is further compounded by the “little media coverage” that Tokaji generally gets in comparison to others, not helped by the “little volume” it has anyway.

As Demko pointed out though, “the Hungarian government recognises the huge potential in the image of the Tokaji name, the quality, art and culture that it represents.

“There has been a huge effort to promote Tokaji but it only makes sense if reliable quality backs up the marketing.”

For Demko, the first move is to “gain credibility,” first and foremost with “sommeliers and in restaurants praised for their food and wine selection.”

That sommeliers are always looking to differentiate themselves with new wines and flavours if of course a help but Demko is also keen to target chefs themselves and “inspire the creators”.

As to getting the wine into the glasses of consumers, Demko is confident due to the “curious and open-minded” attitude many have and is particularly pleased to see the “look of amazement on their face when tasting the sweet wines.”

However, it can be too much of a good thing and “sometimes it’s too sweet for them”, on the other hand many “adore it” too and, as he points out, “luckily we have less sweet wines too.”

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