Furmint one of the most important grape varieties in Hungary would finally be celebrated on 1st February. For a long time, it has been connected almost exclusively to Tokaj wine region, but due to the increasing attention in the last decade; there are vineyards planted with it all over Hungary. It is the first year in 2017 that the International Furmint Day would be celebrated.
It is a late ripening variety; that is the reason it gives usually a medium or full-bodied wine. At the first sight it seems a pity disadvantage that it is vulnerable for certain fungal diseases, however, Botrytis cinerea, the well-known fungus attacking the ripen grape is univocally essential for making Tokaji Szamorodni and Tokaji Aszú, the two iconic sweet wine types of this region. Wines of Furmint are not considered to be aromatic with significant fragrance; therefore, it can reflect the terroir very well just like Chardonnay does, including the growing area as well as the viticulture and winemaking philosophy. Vivid acids are also very characteristic to this variety; they give elegance to the wine and provide excellent capability for longer maturation.
Furmint was common all over the country pre-phylloxera era but From the 20th century its plantations were found almost exclusively in two wine regions, Somló north of lake Balaton, and Tokaj, in north eastern Hungary. Furmint has been widely popular with wine lovers in Hungary mainly due to dry Furmint wines. Furmint from Úrágya vineyard of Királyudvar Winery, made by István Szepsy and Zoltán Demeter in 2000, initiated a revolutionary change in the wine region. Internationally the sweet wines have a bigger reputation.
Furmint February, a thematic month programme organized for the 8th time in a row this year in Hungary aims to highlight this premium quality. Dániel Kézdy, host of the programme series and author of the book People and vineyards published on the wine region decided to step up to the international podium by announcing 1st February as the International Furmint Day from 2017. The mission of the first International Furmint Day is to highlight this exciting and likeable variety for wine lovers all over the world. Make sure you taste some Furmint on 1st of February and hashtag #furmintday.