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Tokay Pinot Gris

Stemming from Alsace in northeastern France, tokay is a wine made from pinot gris grapes grown in clay and limestone soil. Pinot gris grapes were brought to Alsace during the 16th century by General Lazarus von Schwendi.

The flavor profile on this rich, dry wine is quite unique with a full body and a woodsy aroma recalling mushrooms and dried fruits. It’s best enjoyed at room temperature, unlike many white wines that express themselves best when chilled. Foie gras and risotto are common pairings with tokay pinot gris.

Despite what many believe, the pinot gris grape used in tokay is not genetically related to grapes used in Tokaji wines from Hungary’s Tokaji region. These include yellow muscat, furmint, harslevelu, and oremus.

Quick Facts

  • Sommeliers won’t hesitate to pair tokay pinot gris with white-meat dishes, referencing its high levels of acidity, dry profile, and round body as a good match
  • In 1993, an agreement was made between the European Union and Hungary to begin phasing out tokay from wines not originating from Tokaj, Turkey
  • In 2014, a bottle of 1989 Tokay Pinot Gris Clos Jebsal from Domaine Zind-Humbrecht sold at auction for $980

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