The 13th edition of the Balkans International Wine Competition crosses borders for the first time to be held in two countries

In its 13th edition, the Balkans International Wine Competition opens new avenues by expanding into two countries with deep wine traditions – Bulgaria and Turkey. This expansion not only reflects the growing international significance of the competition but also emphasizes the ambition to further recognize the diversity and quality of wines from the region.

At the heart of this year’s edition are two leading figures in the industry, symbolizing the strength and innovation of female entrepreneurship in winemaking – Tsvetelina Nikolova from Katarzyna Estate and Zeynep Arca Şalliel from Arcadia Vineyards. Their efforts and vision for the sustainable development of their wineries over the years serve as an inspiration for the entire industry.

Tsvetelina Nikolova, behind the successes of Katarzyna Estate, is renowned for her commitment to producing wines that reflect the uniqueness and richness of Bulgarian wine regions. Her work highlights the importance of innovation and the pursuit of creating world-class products.

Zeynep Arca Şalliel, managing Arcadia Vineyards, pioneers the application of sustainable methods in Turkish winemaking, thereby contributing to environmental protection and creating wines with a distinct character.

Galina Niforou, Chairwoman of the Bulgarian Association of Wine Exporters and Founder of the Competition, shares her vision: „This year’s edition of the Balkans International Wine Competition, spanning across Bulgaria and Turkey, marks a milestone in our journey to illuminate the diverse and rich wine culture of the Balkans. By showcasing the exceptional leadership and sustainable practices of figures like Tsvetelina Nikolova and Zeynep Arca Şalliel, we celebrate not only the excellence of Balkan wines but also the pioneering spirit of female entrepreneurs in our industry. This expansion reflects our dedication to fostering new trade relationships and promoting our unique wine heritage on an international scale.“

The Balkans International Wine Competition & Festival serves as a platform enabling various stakeholders in the wine business – producers, distributors, importers – to meet and initiate new trade relationships. Each year, the competition is hosted in a different Balkan country, aiding in the promotion of the host nation. The expansion of the competition into two countries is a clear sign of the diversity and rich wine culture of the Balkans, while simultaneously opening up new opportunities for development and collaboration.