Elizabeth Cellars is a family winery founded by one of the first female winemakers in Tokaj, Erzsébet (Elizabeth) Prácser. In the year of the political change in Hungary, 1989, to start their own family business, Erzsébet and her husband bought a cellar in the old wine merchants’ street (Bem street) in the historic center of the town of Tokaj. Not just any cellar, though, but one of the region’s great historical cellars, that was dug in the 1600s, and had been rented by Russian emperors, and among them Tzarina Elizabeth, in the 1700s for storing Aszú wines purchased for the court.
Erzsébet Pince produces around 1000 cases of wine annually, all from historical grand cru and premier cru sites that were classified by Bél Mátyás in the 18th century. The Pracser family–father, mother, daughter, and son–run the estate. They take pride in the production of exceptional single-vineyard dry wines and Aszu, Tokaj’s classic natural botrytis wine.
All of the wines are made in small lots, from low-yielding vineyards that use sustainable and organic viticultural practices. The family team also includes a Master of Wine and Master Sommelier who assists in quality control and blending. The winery’s first bottled vintage was 1993.
The Etyeki Kúria Winery was established in 1996 with a grape growing area of 2 hectares at Etyek Old-Hill. Soon it became the leading winery of its wine region. In year 2000 significant developments were started: a modern processing and a wine tasting room of pleasant atmosphere was built, and in Alcsútdoboz due to the planting of grapes in several steps, the growing area is already 27 hectares today. The winery was the first one to plant Pinot Noir grape in the wine region of Etyek–Buda, and the wine prepared from this grape won many world class awards for the winery.
In 2009, a partnership was established with the Esterházy Winery of Trausdorf, located near the Hungarian-Austrian border. Within the framework of this cooperation, not only is there a viticultural and vinicultural exchange of ideas, but also the marketing expertise to bring Etyeki Kúria onto the world stage.
Sándor Mérész has been serving as chief winemaker at Etyeki Kúria since May 2009. Having overseen the modernization of the winery together with Sára Matolcsy and László Babarczi, he is a man of few words but great actions. His first task was to review the winery’s product range, followed by the assessment and optimization of the company’s design.
The Domaine was expanded about 11 hectares of additional vineyards in the premium regions of Kis-Látó-hegy in Alcsútdoboz, bringing the producing area to a total of over 27 hectares. The new areas were planted in the spring of 2015 with Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir – three of the top varieties grown by the winery.