The largest international wine expo hosts thousands of wineries, visitors need previous preparation to avoid getting lost in mediocre wines. Put the Hungarian booth on your schedule, because you will find true icons within a few squaremeters. Are you looking for the Hungarian equivalent of Gaja or Mondavi? Visit H03 in Hall 15 on 15–17 Marchin Düsseldorf, Germany! Now we recommend 7 of the 63 exhibitors just to bring your appetite…
1. Gere Attila Winery, Villány
An absolute icon in the southern mediterranean wine region of Villány. Attila Gere created the first cult wine called Kopar (a Bordeaux blend), and soon after another one made of Merlot called Solus. He was a pioneer to sell wines prior to its release: Kopar and Solus are so sought after, that usually they are sold out before they are actually released. The winery works hard to keep the oustanding quality, and they are eager to introduce new products like the trendy Frici aerated sparkling in white and rosé.
2. Heumann Winery, Villány (Siklós)
The Swiss–German couple has long been a key producer in Hungary, in Siklós, which is the „white spot” of Villány wine region. The fact has been proved recently by 88 points given to Heumann Rhine Riesling by Meininger’s Wine Business. „The reason is quite simple. Siklos towards the west has a slightly cooler climate but what in my opinion is the most important fact is that the thinner layer of loess on the lime stone rock, compared to Villány. That gives our wines (whites plus reds) a great minerality and a slightly higher acidity. Different terroir!” – says Erhard Heumann.
3. Dúzsi Winery, Szekszárd
Tamás Dúzsi, founder of the family winery is dubbed The Rosé King with reason. He dedicates special attention to rosé wines, which are – according to his philosophy – harder to make in outstanding quality. With barrel ageing wines get a „make up”, while a reductive rosé is fragile, winemaker has less tools for correction. He and his family make several single varietal rosé wines (Kékfrankos, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Kadarka etc.). Jeff Jensen of Wine Enthusiast magazine has just picked Kékfrankos Rosé as Editor’s choice with 90 points!
4. Garamvári Winery, Etyek–Buda and Balatonboglár
Winemaker of the Year, Winery of the Year and recently Lifelong Achievement Award – Vencel Garamvári has all these prestigious awards. He is a sparkling connoisseur, therefore it was obvious to create méthode traditionelle sparkling wines besides still wines from Balatonboglár region. The sparkling cellar is in Budafok (Budapest) and grapes come from cooler climate regions for sparklings. Vencel was to first to make Furmint sparkling wines!
5. Hilltop Neszmély, Neszmély wine region
Winemaker of the Year in Hungary AND in the United Kingdom – Ákos Kamocsay, chief winemaker of Hilltop had this rare feat in his career with hundreds of gold medals. This winery had significant role to make the world get acquainted with Cserszegi Fűszeres grape variety – which was labelled for a while in England as the Unpronounceable. The Chardonnay Selection of Hilltop is a collectors’ item: Chardonnay wines from the same vintage made in the same way from different vineyards.
6. Vylyan Vineyard and Winery, Villány
Vylyan is much more than a winery, it is a cultural and artistic centre as well. Poetry and visual art is highly present in every movement of Vylyan, which would not make them famous in itself, but art is paired with exceptional wines as well. The latest venture is a crossover project with poems and short stories inspired by the wines, and with labels inspired by the poems and stories. Do you want to sell wines with stories? Visit Vylyan!
7. Grand Tokaj, Tokaj
The only state owned winery, the largest undergrand labyrinth in Hungary, countless awards and a chief winemaker Károly Áts with the double result of 100 points (Wine & Spirit and Robert Parker) – this is Grand Tokaj. Mundus Vini 2018 Best in Show award winning Szarvas Tokaji Aszú 6 puttonyos comes from Szarvas vineyard, Tarcal. 2013 vintage was an outstanding vintage when berries were fully infected by the noble botrytis. Notes of loess based soil, pear, dried chamomile, candied orange peel and a touch of smokiness from the new barrel. Pear compote and ripened orange on the palate with honey and chamomile tea. Creamy texture, the blessing of sunshine, amazing structure!