The basic vocabulary of viticulture in Hungarian, namely the words “grape” and “wine”, originates from ancient Turkish, from that we may deduce that our ancestors from Hungarian prehistory had already known winemaking. Another proof is that in Levedia, during the cohabitation with the Kazars, our ancestors already pursued winemaking. Thus, when arriving and settling down in the Carpathian Basin (Pannonia), they could continue with viticulture. Beyond classical Pannonian (Transdanubian) territories, viticulture existed in greater Hungary before the Magyars’ conquest as well, namely along the river Bodrog and in the southern “Szerémség” area, of Celtic origin.

The viticulture of Pannonian, more precisely Roman origin at Lake Balaton survived the storms of migration, and the winemaking skills were quickly adapted by the Hungarians. Later, priests and colonists arriving from the West increased local knowledge. Our first Kings considered the viticulture being important. This is illustrated by the fact that, during the foundation of the Abbey in Pécsvárad, 110 wine growers got assigned to it.

In later centuries first the Turkish Empire, then the trade policy of the Habsburgs’ pushed back wine production. All this has been topped by the epidemic of phylloxera in the end of 19th century. After stopping it in 1897, the Hungarian viticulture has been re-launched on a new basis, e.g. rootstock production. Quality winery improved especially in the historic wine regions.

By this time, Hungary had all foundations for getting back into the wine production and wine trade circulation. Tokaj wines and Bikavér have been recognized both in Europe and beyond. After a few decades of interruption, in the last years of the 20th century, the production of quality wines has been renewed thanks to our excellent winemakers. Nowadays, wines produced by domestic winemakers are renowned internationally as well.

Our Wine Sisterhood does not relate to any single wine region; our objective is to support Hungarian winemakers and oenologists all over the country. Through our actions we would like to contribute to the success of the work started by the winemakers, as we took oath during our foundation.