A dynamic group of up-and-coming winemakers has chosen to make this lovely village their home. Surrounded by vineyards and forested hills, most wineries are based in the traditional stone houses and are open by appointment or at weekends.
For centuries Erdőbénye has been renowned for its woodworkers, including the coopers whose handcrafted barrels, which are made from carefully seasoned oak from the surrounding Zemplén hills, are sought after around Hungary and further afield. The coopers even have their own dance which is a sight to behold, and a museum packed with ancient tools, some of which were fashioned by the owner of the house. Discover carvings too, dotted around as bus shelters, statues, etc. that adorn the village.
Don’t miss probably the best festival in the Tokaj Wine Region, the festival in the gardens of Erdőbénye, Wine, Shine…Bénye pleases with music, exhibitions, bike and walking tours, food and, of course, wines in the winemakers’ gardens!
The Bor, Mámor…Bénye association also organises smaller events during the year with main ones in spring and around Halloween.
Eating and drinking
Gigerli – the funky wine bar of the region has a selection of the best wines from Erdőbénye and the region. Created by talented winemaker Attila Hommona, the wine bar is often open at weekends, drawing a crowd from the cities of Budapest, Miskolc and Debrecen to enjoy excellent wines and company in a cool place with interesting culinary experiments. But do check to see if they’re open.
Karádi-Berger – great wines in a superb setting, one of the greenest around. Perfect for tasting in the garden, under the shade of trees while children enjoy the sandpit.
Things to do and see
Shepherds (and their sheep!) have long appreciated the rich, herb-filled grassland around the village, and this is still true today. The Gonda family make delicious cheeses from sheep and goats milk at Ligeti Juhászat.
Prefer the shade of hills and valleys? A spring bubbling from the rocks, the chance to find obsidian, opals, even gold? Wildcats, deer, even wild boar. The stunning Aranyosi-völgy, with its cool, forest air, can be a wonderful respite in the heat of summer.
See fossils, rocks and hand-drawn paintings of local flora in the renovaated house in the centre of town, the Szepsi Laczkó Máté House.
Visit a cooper, the Coopers’ and Smiths’ Museums