Édes regina Le Bouchon Vinothek

Le Bouchon Vinothek, Switzerland

Importer of the Month

If you are a wine connoisseur and you are on Instagram, you are quite likely to come across the stunning posts of the Swiss Le Bouchon Vinothek, a wine store with a strong Hungarian wine selection. We asked Péter Bero, one of the two managers about how and what they sell to their Swiss customers. The other team member is Regina Édes – she is in our cover photo.

Le Bouchon Vinothek
078 714 88 88

Labels so far:

Áts (Tokaj), Bock (Villány), Bolyki (Eger), Bussay (Zala), Czurda (Pannonhalma), Degenfeld (Tokaj), Dereszla (Tokaj), Etyeki Kúria (Etyek–Buda), Fekete (Szekszárd), A. Gere (Villány), Gizella (Tokaj), Grand Tokaj (Tokaj), Günzer (Villány), Heimann (Szekszárd), Heumann (Villány), Ikon (South Balaton), Istvándy (Badacsony), Juliet Victor (Tokaj), Kiss Gábor (Villány), Kiss István (Tokaj), Konyári (South Balaton), Kovács Nimród (Eger), Kreinbacher (Somló), Kristinus (South Balaton), Lelovits (Villány), Liszkay (Balaton Uplands), Mád Moser (Tokaj), Mészáros (Szekszárd), Nyakas (Etyek–Buda), Oremus (Tokaj), Paulus (Mór), Royal Tokaji (Tokaj), Ruppert (Villány), Sauska (Tokaj / Villány), Simkó (Tokaj), St Andrea (Eger), Steigler (Sopron), Stier (Villány), Szászi (Badacsony), Szepsy (Tokaj), Takler (Szekszárd), Thummerer (Eger), Törley (Etyek–Buda), Villa Tolnay (Badacsony), Vylyan (Villány)

– Le Bouchon Vinothek has the widest range of Hungarian wines, yet, as far as I know the team is small.
– Yes, it used to be a one-man-show, and later it has become a “two-men-company”. My colleague, Regina Édes has WSET3 degree, she is a member of the presidency of the Swiss Sommelier Association, plus she is a freelance influencer under the nickname ‘swirlsipfeel’. Her knowledge of wine counts a lot.

Péter Bero Le Bouchon Vinothek Switzerland

– What’s your story, how did you get close to the wine world?
– I have had a strong bond to wine since my childhood: my grandparents and also my parents used to have a vineyard and I took part in all the vineyard jobs as a child. Planting, hoeing, distributing manure, pruning, cellar works – I did everything. I spent the summers at my grandparents’ place in Neszmély wine region, therefore the unmistakable smell of a natural wine cellar has captured me and attracted me to this world for good. There was no question, wine is my path, even though I have arrived here after some other projects (for example a Swiss marketing project). Now, as an economist, I use my marketing experience for our own webshop in Switzerland.

– How about the other team member, Regina?
– We got to know each other on the Instagram, because we share the same passion for wine. We immediately felt that we have this mission in common. Our mutual aim is not only to sell Hungarian wines, but to make them known, because here, in Switzerland the greatest disadvantage of Hungarian wines is the lack of knowledge. We are working hard to change this situation with product samples, online and offline commercials, advertisments and tastings.

– The Swiss keep saying that their wines are too good to export, they drink it all themselves. How do they welcome Hungarian wines?
– Indeed, only 1% of the Swiss wines are exported, which is absolutely understandable due to the less attractive price–value ratio. Yet, Swiss wines make up for only the 30% of the consumption, the rest is imported. Hungarian wines are less known, the average wine consumers have hardly any or not correct information about Hungarian wines. They are quite open to taste single varietal wines, however, they are less acceptable with the blends. The intense acidity is something that the Swiss wine drinker is not used to, now wonder knowing the character of Chasselas, the most common Swiss variety.

Kovács Nimród Pinot Noir
Sauska sparkling wine
Kristinus Merlot Balaton Hungary

– Do you ever organize tastings?
– Certainly, tastings are the best tools to show how great wines are made in Hungary.

– Who are your customers?
– We mostly sell off trade, selling only to a couple of restaurants. There is a lot to work in order to have numerous listings in Swiss restaurants. Our clients are mostly local wine connoisseurs, and only about 20% of them are Hungarian.

– Le Bouchon Vinothek is fairly active in social media, your posts are mouthwatering, it is a pleasure to see them. Do they help? Do you consider social media efficient regarding your sales?
– Yes, we can say the efficiency of social media is significant, thanks to Regina for the quality posts. However, the most efficient channel is still the tasting due to the lack of knowledge about Hungarian wines.

– What types of wines are the top sellers and what are the less popular wines?
– We sell the most of sweet wines and dry Furmint from Tokaj as well as the red varietal wines. Blends are not popular here regardless the colour.

– How adventurous are the Swiss consumers? I can see Heimann & Fiai Kadarka in your portfolio – are they brave enough to try less known varieties?
– Unfortunately, they prefer the well known wines, like Primitivo from Italy or Pinot Noir from their home country. So, this is why we should organize tasting, so that the Swiss could see that Hungarian varieties can give outstanding quality.

Heimann Barbár Szekszárd Hungary
Heimann and Sons Kadarka Szekszárd Hungary

– I can see some Kristinus wines in your range as well. How about the organic, biodynamic, natural wis in Switzerland?
– There is a trend indeed, however, in our portfolio this style does not represent significant quantity for the moment. We have to work on building confidence towards the lesser known wines. We are on it…

– Do you often go to Hungary? Do you plan to increase the range of wines?
– Actually, we are constantly increasing the portfolio. We travel to Hungary 4-5 times a year and we always taste a lot.

Regina Édes Le Bouchon Vinothek Switzerland
Péter Bero Le Bouchon SVinothek witzerland

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