The white grape variety most probably comes from Hungary. Synonyms grouped alphabetically by country are golden grape, honey grape, Honigler, Weißer Honigler(Germany); Honigler Bianco(Italy); Bieli Medenac(Croatia); Alfölditraube, Honigler, Langstingler, Silberweiß(Austria); Alföldi Fehér, Aranyka, Aranyka Sarga, Budai Fehér, Margit, Mézédes, Mézes, Mézes Fehér Szölö, Sárfehér, Sarféjer, Sárga Margit, Sárga Zsölö, Szagos Sárfehér, Zsige(Hungary). The name "honey" probably refers to the high sugar content of the grapes.
It must not be confused with the varieties Arany Sárfehér, Juhfark (Sárfehér) or Sárfehér, despite the fact that synonyms or morphological similarities seem to indicate this. DNA analyses carried out in 2009 and morphological similarities indicate a possible close relationship with the Austrian variety Roter Veltliner. The variety Mézes Fehér was a crossing partner in the new breeding of Lakhegyi Mézes.
The early-ripening, high-yielding vine is resistant to drought, sensitive to winter frost, and susceptible to botrytis and both types of mildew. The often suspected origin from the Balkans has not yet been confirmed. In any case, it used to be widespread in Central Europe and was cultivated mainly in mixed sets. The variety is almost extinct in Hungary and is cultivated only by individual winegrowers. In 2010, only two hectares of vineyard area were designated (Kym Anderson). In Austria there are a few Honigler vines in the vine museum of the Franz Leth winery (Wagram, Lower Austria).
Source: Wine Grapes / J. Robinson, J. Harding, J. Vouillamoz / Penguin Books Ltd. 2012
Pictures: Ursula Brühl, Doris Schneider, Julius Kühn Institute (JKI)