Winemaker of the Winemakers 2024 Hungary

The 50 Best Hungarian Winemakers announced

Winemaker of the Winemakers selection

This award is considered to be the most prestigious Hungarian award by many experts, because the winemakers themselves choose the best one. Colleagues can probably more appreciate each other’s achievement, knowing all the challenges and obstacles of this profession. Check out the list of the 50 nominated winemakers announced last week.

The process of the award

First the previous award winners nominate, thus we receive a list of 50 top winemakers. Then the voting period takes place, the 50 nominated winemakers vote for their favourite one among themselves. The 5 winemakers with the five most votes will be the finalists. The 50 then will vote again and decide who gets the “Hollywood Walk of Fame”-like star on the pavement of Zrínyi street in Budapest (sometime in April).


The youngest, the farthest and the others

To get to this list, winemakers should first get into the mind of the 16 earlier winners (János Konyári passed away). To be visible is key – thus winemakers should participate in community activities, national wine contests, be active. Besides, it is essential to make remarkably good wines. Being excellent is not enough, to get to the list the winemaker should create outstanding wines.
We can find several famous, top winemakers among the 50, producers who have won several other awards, for example the Winemaker of the Year title, like József Bock from Villány, Ferenc Vesztergombi from Szekszárd, János Frittmann from Kunság.

József Bock 40 harvest
József Bock (Villány)
Ferenc Vesztergombi
Ferenc Vesztergombi (Szekszárd)
János Frittmann
János Frittmann (Kunság)

In the list there are 3 children of previous winners: Dorottya Bussay (Balaton – Zala), Dániel Konyári (Balatonboglár), István Szepsy Jr (Tokaj) and one brother: Géza Légli (Ottó Légli was the winner in 2010.
There are not only winemakers, but also owners and estate managers in the list, which we can absolutely agree with. To manage a large estate, to maintain the quality of the wines, to take care of everything is a huge job and responsibility. Some of the owners / managers are Károly Barta (Tokaj), János Eszterbauer (Szekszárd), Péter Molnár of Patricius (Tokaj).

Károly Barta
Károly Barta (Tokaj)
János Eszterbauer (Szekszárd)
János Eszterbauer (Szekszárd)
Péter Molnár, Patricius WInery (Tokaj)
Péter Molnár, Patricius Winery (Tokaj)

The award is for Hungarian winemakers not only living within the borders of Hungary, but also for Hungarian winemakers living in other countries of the Carpathian Basin – therefore we can find Frigyes Bott (Slovakia), Géza Balla (Romania), Oszkár Maurer (Serbia) in the list. All the last years’ finalists are in the list again – except for the winner, Zoltán Heimann (Szekszárd). Zsolt Liptai of Pannonhalma Archabbey is said to have the more chance to win according to many fellow winemakers.
The list also contains several winemakers, who cultivate the vineyard in organic way, make natural wines, practice the low intervention principles. Some names to mention: Krisztina Csetvei (Mór), Gábor Karner (Mátra), Endre Szászi (Badacsony).
The youngest female winemaker among the 50 is Dorottya Bussay (Balaton – Zala), while the youngest boy is Tibor Gál (Eger).
The 5 finalists will be announced soon, but being in the list is 50 is already a great achievement. Congratulations to all!

Zsolt Liptai, Pannonhalma Archabbey (Pannonhalma)
Zsolt Liptai, Pannonhalma Archabbey (Pannonhalma)
Krisztina Csetvei Mór Királyleányka
Krisztina Csetvei (Mór)
Tibor Gál (Eger)
Tibor Gál (Eger)

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