Lighter and fresher than a Tokaji Aszú, this still has the hallmark characters of fresh and dried apricots, orange blossom and runny honey. Delicious complexity and richness but saved from being cloying by a firm acid line. Snap up this delicious late-harvest wine while there's still stock – a perfect accompaniment to a fruit tart or cheese platter.
"Shortly after the start of the new millennium, the genuine shortage of aszú (botrytis) harvests and the limited volumes even in those vintages led us to explore other opportunities. We researched ways of producing more accessible, but equally vibrant, wines of around 100 g/L (equivalent to a 4 puttonyos sweetness). Rather than selecting individual berries shriveled by botrytis, Late Harvest relies on partial bunch selection, which naturally includes ripe, overripe and botrytised berries. This combination of different ripening stages of the berries inside the bunch gives a distinctive Tokaji character but does not require the long ageing of aszú wines. The harvested clusters are then pressed and the rich must fermented in the same manner as the dry wines, maintaining a balance of sugar and natural acidity. The Late Harvest spends about three months in barrels, using some new casks. As with all Royal Tokaji wines, quality, house style and balance is the focus."
– Ben Howkins on Royal Tokaji Late Harvest