The history of Merano WineFestival

The history of Merano WineFestival and how it was born

How the Merano WineFestival was born is a story of passion for wine between friends. In 1992 the first Merano International Wine Festival (MIWF) took place in the halls of the Hotel Palace in Merano. At the same time the Gourmet-Club Alto Adige was founded. 

Thanks to the presence of the wine producers, a dialogue with the visitors was created and everyone could exchange their views on the wines offered for tasting. The wine lovers had the opportunity to meet the individual producers and the personalities behind the great wines. Without crossing half of Europe and without making long queues a meeting point for the world of wine was created. 

The success story of the Merano WineFestival

The success of the first edition exceeds all expectations. With the initial commitment of a few modest media – the local mass media and around 500 targeted invitations – the Gourmet-Club-Alto Adige immediately registered 200 members. The setting of the event is the secret of Merano’s success: remaining always faithful to the initial dimensions, the elegant but still familial atmosphere is best for tasting of wines and gastronomic products and offers the opportunity to exchange opinions.

Gourmet’s International: the organizing company of the event was born

In 1993, the Gourmet-Club-Alto Adige was transformed into the current company Gourmet’s International. Then as now, the aim is to be ambassadors of the highest quality in the world of food and wine production. Also, another ambition is to act as a awardee for supreme quality through the “Merano Wine & Culinaria Award” in the wine and culinary sectors worldwide.

In 2005 the award of the Merano WineFestival was born, now called The WineHunter Award


With the birth of The WineHunter Award in 2005 a new era begun, an era about Helmuth Kocher‘s quest for quality and excellence in wine, culinary products, spirits and beers.

This vision gave rise to the many exclusive events all over the world organized by Gourmet’s International: The WineHunter Events in London, Prague, Budapest, Munich, Vienna, Bratislava, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Vilnius, Riga, Tallinn, Zurich, Kiev, Hamburg, Cologne, Rome, Milan, Aspen.

The history of Merano WineFestival and how it was bornThe success story of the Merano WineFestival