Red Label, 5 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 2003
Only seven vintages of the Royal Tokaji Red Label have been produced since its premier release of the 1990 vintage. Since then, the Red Label has been made in 1991, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2000 and 2003. This wine is a blend of carefully selected grapes from several of Royal Tokaji’s vineyards.
- Appellation: Tokaj
- Vine Age: 20–30 years old
Winter was very long in 2003. Cold nights in early April delayed budding, however, a sudden and remarkable shift in temperatures at the end of April, beginning of May assisted in getting the vineyards back on track. Despite above-average rainfall, the region was dry due to low humidity during the vineyards’ vegetative cycle. This was not a serious problem in the vineyards with volcanic clay topsoil, but did cause some damage in a few of the vineyards with loess soil. All of these factors led to an early harvest in Tokaj.
- Harvest Date(s): Early October to mid-November
- Barrel Aging: 3.5 years in old oak
- Bottled: March 2007
- Bottle Aging: 2 months
- Varietal Composition: Furmint, Hárslevelú, Muscat
- Production (in cases): 15,600 cases (6/500ml)
- Cases Imported: 6,000
- Alcohol: 10.0%
- TA: 10.0g/L
- RS: 168g/L
- Serving Suggestions: Serve slightly chilled (50 to 54 degrees) 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.
Red Label, 5 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 2003 – 89 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Honeyed apricot and orange peel on the nose and palate typify this elegant but playful botrytis wine. The wine’s lively acidity gives it a bounce on the tongue, adding dimension to the citrus components and lending it more to food pairing with desserts or a cheese plate.”
Red Label, 5 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 2003 – 89 points – winereviewonline.com
"A blend of Furmint, Harslevelu and Muscat...shows the waxy notes of botrytis mingled with ripe stone fruits and raisins. The exceptional acidity nicely balances the 16.8% sweetness, allowing the apricot and hazelnut flavors to come through...."
Red Label, 5 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 2003 – 90 points – Wine & Spirits
“Bright, vibrant orange notes buzz with acidity, wrapping tightly around the soft, ripe apricot fruit. This needs time to relax; with another five years, its intriguing scents of beeswax, burnt orange and toast may meld with the fruit flavors.”
Red Label, 5 Puttonyos, Tokaj – 2003 – 91 points – The Tasting Panel
“A unique spice profile with tart acidity; a beautiful, deep burnished gold color.”