- 17 Oct 2023 5:17 AM
Why is this award so precious?
The Winery of the Year award is a highly recognized annual award in Hungary given annually. The award was founded in 2002 by the National Council of Wine Regions, the Hungarian Wine Academy and the Association of Hungarian Grape Growers and Winemakers, the procedure is organized by Bacchus Studio.
The winery to gain the award should enter the competition with a carefully worked out, detailed document and then a professional jury decides the winner.
When deciding, the professionals take a lot of aspects into consideration, like these:
– The quality of wines produced in the winery.
– The impact of the winery on local, regional, national and international level.
– The role of the winery in increasing the good reputation of Hungarian wines.
– The work of the winery to make quality and moderate wine drinking more popular.
– The image of the winery and the wines.
– The look of the winery building and all its facilities.
– Innovations, recent development of the winery.
– The size, condition, age of vineyards.
– Employees working conditions, the number of new workplaces created
The selection procedure has changed this year, now there is a nomination period (by a wide range of professionals), and then the three wineries with the nomination is asked to prepare the detailed document about the winery.
This year A Gere, Takler and Pannonhalma Archabbey wineries gained the most nominations thus they have submitted the detailed documents. Upon receiving the competition files, a jury of 27 knowledgable professionals selected the winner: this year it is Pannonhalma Archabbey.
On holy land
The winery cultivates about 50 hectares divided among four major vineyards, each of which used to belong to the Abbey in the historic past.
Since the natural conditions of Pannonhalma closely resemble those of the upper Loire Valley and Alsace, two-thirds of the vineyards are planted by grape varieties that make crisp, easy-drinking white wines of fine quality – mainly from Rhein Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, and Gewürztraminer. In designing the composition of the vineyards, the estate has made it a point to uphold local and historic traditions by making room for Olaszrizling (Welshriesling), a native Hungarian variety as well as for Királyleányka, originally from Transylvania, the historic part of Hungary.
With visitors arriving from all corners of the world, the winery devoted one third of the acreage to popular international varieties that have shown good promise for the long term, such as Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc.
Among the red grapes, Pinot Noir has a prominent role as being ideally suited to the local climate and soils, and therefore uniquely capable of expressing the potential of Pannonhalma as a red wine producing district.