“Winery of the Year 2016” – Patricius Winery – Bodrogkisfalud – Tokaj – Hungary

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The National Council of Wine Communities, the Hungarian Wine Academy and the Association of Hungarian Grape and Wine Producers held the ceremony at Bodrogkisfalud, a part of area at Tokaj, to celebrate the title of “Winery of the Year 2016”. This year the Patricius Winery  – Tokaj received the award for its winery which grows grapes in seven vineyards at a total of 85 hectares on its combined are.

The award acknowledges work of wine maker who raise the profile of Hungarian wine on domestic and foreign markets.

The Patricius Winery was already established in the 17th century by the Kékessy family. The Kékessy family’s winemaking traditional mission is well-kept throughout the centuries. To-day the owners are Dezső Kékessy and his daughter Katinka Kékessy. The winery is a reconstructed winepress house of the vineyard Várhegy. The building was previously owned by Jesuits and various aristocratic families, such as the Wolkenstein and Falkenheim, Széchenyi and Rákóczi, Falkenstein and Hohenlohe. Even though the building was used as a simple press house, it was mentioned in the Tokaj – Hegyalja Album of 1867. Mr. Kékessy said  Q.: ”  The main goal of our winemaking process is complexity, harmony, and balance. In the best years we release small batch selections of our most outstanding vineyards.” Also added by saying: “The autumn came with warm, dry days and the development of sugar in the berries looked very good. Botrytis turned up in the first half of September resulting in a very high “aszú” grapes. It is our mission to elevate the dry Tokaj wines to their worthy rank. For these we harvest only the entirely ripe and healthy clusters. We made our first dry Furmint – 2005,  the first dry Yellow Muscat – 2008, and our first dry Hárslevelű – 2009. The secret of Tokaj’s sophisticated taste is the Volcanic soil and the varietals’ distinct flavor set the basic features of these wines.

The Patricius vineyards are situated on volcanic andesite and rhyolite tufa complemented by patches of loess. This exceptional composition of soil giving the special blend. The Tokaj wines thus merit preeminent title, and tokaji aszú is renowned throughout world. The Patricius winery also produce a special  “tokaji aszú törköly” Pálinka.

“Rebuilding a large domain in Tokaj, acre by acre, handful by handful, is more than a passion, it is an oath to the future. It is with this pledge that my father and I purchased the best plots, replanting when necessary, sometimes even reversing the direction of old rows, selecting and occasionally removing the less than perfect vines.  They absolutely established a state-of-the-art winery, a place to learn about creating wine, and enjoy the harmony, the landscape and friendly people whilst visiting the Patricius „grapeland”whilst visiting the venue on a cellar tours and wine tastings.

Was taken on a wine tour down to the basement, where were shown and spoken about the handy equipments that produce the “King of Wines” that melts your soul when drinking the superb wine at/from the Patricius  winery. As said by our tour guide: Q. “In our Tokaj vineyards harvesting begins at the end of October or latest by mid-November and is divided into two distinct operations.

First the mature botrytis shriveled grapes the word “Aszú” phrase in Hungarian covers the handpicked one by one-off the vine. Afterwards, the less botrytis clusters are harvested whole. After fermentation, wine and base wine is placed into 136 liter barrels, known as “The Gönci” barrels”. The Aszú wines are bottled after 2.5 – 4 years kept in old oak barrels.

The Aszú is measured with let’s say, “hods”which is the wooden basket carried on the backside, in Hungarian we say “puttony” that stands for the number of botrytis grapes within baskets … 3, 4, 5, or 6.

The first late harvest wine an excellent wine produced in 2003, which received the brand name Katinka and is protected just as the “Patricius” name of the company.

The wines from Patricius winery participated at the world’s major wine competitions and gained more than 30 gold medals which shows their uniqueness and quality. In 2013 received the awarded for “The most beautiful vineyard estate of the Year”.

A true saying is kept alive when saying… the harmony of food and wine opens new dimensions to the tasters and more to it wish to mention that foreigners “mainly” remember their experience in Hungary by the country’s delights.

Update and snaps Aggie Reiter

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