Californian Cabernet Franc competition 2023 Hungarian medal winners

Hungarian Cab Franc success in California!

Ours was the 2nd most represented country

We are aware of the fact that this is not something like the legendary Paris Judgment, and certainly Hungary represented less than 10% of the wines. Yet it is great feedback that our Cabernet Franc wines – namely Villányi Franc wines – can meet international standards as well.

From 4 countries 78 wines entered a recent Cabernet Franc competition organized by California Wines and Wineries. Obviously, US was the most represented country with wines from 7 states (California, Michigan, New York, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, and Washington). Which is not obvious at all is that Hungary was the second most represented country behind the US, thanks to Dr. Elizabeth Smith wine writer and jury member of the contest. She participated in the last edition of Franc & Franc conference in Villány, Hungary and she worked hard to recruit Hungarian entries. Hungary was the second most represented country behind the US with 7 entries. Wines were tasted in 6 categories. Though the winner of the international category was an Italian wine (2017 Corti Brothers), Hungary won the most medals in this category with 1 gold, 5 silver and 1 bronze.

Hungarian (Villány) medal winners

– Rejiji Villányi Franc Kopár Vineyard Villány 2017 (Super Premium) – Gold
100% Cabernet Franc
Gere Villányi Franc Ördögárok Dűlő(Vineyard) Villány 2018 (Super Premium) – Silver
100% Cabernet Franc
– Chateau Teleki Villányi Franc Villány 2019 (Premium) – Silver
100% Cabernet Franc
– Jammertal KOH-I-NOOR 105.6 Villány 2018 – Silver
Cabernet Franc 96%, Merlot 2%, Syrah 2%
– Jammertal KOH-I-NOOR 105.6 Villány 2019 – Silver
Cabernet Franc 98%, Merlot 2%
Jammertal Cassiopeia CF*CIH Villány 2017 – Silver
92% Cabernet Franc, 8% Merlot
Bakonyi Péter Villányi Cabernet Franc 2020 (Classic) – Bronze
100% Cabernet Franc
Just one comment to this last wine: I (Ágnes Németh, editor of personally really like this wine, very elegant, ethereal, fruit driven. Due to its featherlight character, it might shine less among more aged, more full bodied wines. Yet I recommend to taste it!

Judges of the contest

  • Tom Bender, head judge. Tom has led California Sierra Foothill Competition for over 35 years, served as a California State Fair judge, and also is a wine writer and instructor at a local college
  • Tana Cole, winemaker at Jessie’s Grove in Lodi, California
  • Fran Cunniffe, DipWSET and Certified Sommelier
  • Jim Denham, proprietor of The Wine Steward, former winemaker and educator
  • Mike Dunne, retired food editor, wine columnist for the Sacramento Bee, distinguished judge at San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
  • Debbie Miller, WSET 2 with distinction, wine steward at the Tipsy Frog in Copperopolis, California.
  • Dr. Elizabeth Smith, WSET 3, wine writer, copywriter for Naked Wines USA

Read more about the contest by the chief organizer, Michael Kelly here

Californian Cabernet Franc contest 2023 jury
The jury with Dr. Elizabeth Smith on the left

There is another international Cabernet Franc contest, actually in Villány, Hungary: Franc du Monde 

The first Franc Du Monde results announced

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