We have many standards of excellence at the VDP. The bearers of our needles of honor and trophies, our VDP.Ambassadors and our Traubenadler sommeliers.

VDP.honors where VDP.honors are due! Our VDP.Winegrowers are delighted and proud to see the message of good wine from Germany (and of course from the VDP.Estates) spreading nationally and internationally. To express their respect and thanks for exceptional dedication by individual wine personalities, we have been awarding the VDP.Needle of Honor or even the VDP.Trophy to personalities who are particularly committed to wine for many years. Every year, we also look for sommeliers throughout Germany whose wine lists further awaken the thirst for VDP.Wines. Particularly outstanding concepts are awarded the title VDP.Traubenadler Sommelier. In Germany, the VDP.Wine Culture Experts also support us in raising awareness about the high quality standards and notable wines of the VDP.Estates. Internationally, we train selected wine experts from journalists to wine educators into VDP.Ambassadors.


True commitment to German wine is always prize-worthy in our book.

Since the beginning of the new century, the Prädikatsweingüter have awarded the VDP Trophy Origin Germany to outstanding publicists who have rendered outstanding services to German wine through their work. The award is given to persons and/or publications who have made an extraordinary contribution to the positive development of German wine in general and to the image of top wines in particular and who have succeeded in communicating the topics of enjoyment, culture and origin Germany in an outstanding way.

Marcus Hofschuster
Laudator and VDP.Vice President Armin Diel congratulated Marcus Hofschuster and praised the work of the committed wine critic. "For the first time, the VDP is not honouring a book author or journalist who has made a mark with his contributions to daily newspapers or wine magazines, but a man who has quietly convinced the public with his work for Wein-Plus on the Internet and has become a pioneer in online wine reviews. Hofschuster has been the Wein-Plus wine guru known for reliably reproducible results since 2000. [...] He tastes mostly alone and always blind. He writes down his evaluation and grade and then reveals the bottle to know who the producer is. Otherwise you don't learn anything!

2012 Gerhard Eichelmann
Although the prizewinner, who comes from Franconia, knew wine from childhood through his parents' 50 Ar vineyard, he only turned his passion for wine into his main profession after a detour to an international career as a management consultant. In 1997, the graduate economist and business economist founded the publishing house Mondo in Heidelberg and introduced the internationally customary 100-point system for wine evaluations in Germany with the wine magazine "Mondo - wines of the world", which has been published free of advertisements and exclusively by subscription for 62 issues. The first issue of "Eichelmann" followed in 2000. Today "Der Eichelmann" is one of the standard works of German wine with a circulation (2011) of over 25,000 copies, in which over 800 winegrowers and 8000 wines are criticized.

2009 Freddy Price (†)
He has worked as a wine merchant, wine agent, and wine consultant. He has headed tours around wine regions, while writing extensively on many aspects of theses activities. In 1985, he set up the highly successful “The Magnificent Seven”, an agency representing seven major producers in Germany. His passion for Riesling has driven him to travel the world experiencing how this wine is made in different climates, by different producers. Because Freddy Price helped developed the foundation of the Riesling Renaissance and has been so loyal to German Riesling culture, the Prädikat Wine Estates, honoured him with this award.

2006 Mario Scheuermann (†)
Numerous books were written by him, such as 'Essen wie Gott in Deutschland' or 'Die großen Weine des Jahrhunderts'. A real outcry went through the wine world when he published his first classification of German top wineries in 1985. Mario Scheuermann is a guardian of the classification idea and is convinced that this is the right way for German wineries. Therefore he always accompanies critically, but mostly constructively, the way of the VDP estates for a classification of German vineyards and estates. The annual Erste Lage Preview also goes back to his suggestion.

2005 Stuart Pigott, Wine critic and journalist
amongst other things ... The Great White Wines of Germany; Brave New Wine World; Planet Wine. Consciously, as his biography notes, the Brit Stuart Pigott is an enfant terrible, a fabulating provocateur who violates all the rules of wine criticism with unbridled passion. He has chosen Germany as his wine home. Here he fights with his weapon, the language, for the original culture of German wines. His encounters with the winemakers have inspired him to write numerous books. In addition, he is in demand as an author by Weingourmet, Feinschmecker and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, among others.

2004 Pit Falkenstein, Author of the DM/Euro hit list
"The 100 best vineyards in Germany". "You don't like rush jobs, you don't like detailed research." In the laudation, Pit Falkenstein's decades of 'wine critical' commitment and exemplary wine journalist career were honoured. With "Wiwo's Weinkabinett", he launched the first major column on the subject of wine ever in the Wirtschaftswoche in 1974. In 1985 he launched the DM/Euro hit list: "Germany's 100 best estates"; outstanding examples of a broad, committed, journalistic spectrum of work.

2004 The European wine magazine Vinum and its long-standing editor-in-chief Rudolf Knoll
"In the work of Rudolf Knoll, the focus is not on personal vanity, but on working on the matter itself, on enthusiasm for wine and on an unbiased, critical view of the colourful hustle and bustle of the wine world. As editor of Stunde 0 of VINUM in Germany, Knoll was and is the driving force: initiator, organizer and multiplier of the Grand Prix of VINUM, the only European wine magazine. The German Red Wine Award (1987) would not exist without him, nor would the German Riesling Award (1989). Sporting fairness characterizes his reporting and unmistakable humour his more than 35 titles published in passing.

2003 Wine guide "Gault Millau Wein-Guide Deuschland" and the magazine "Alles über Wein" with the authors: Armin Diel and Joel Payne
Laudator Ulrich Kienzle: "Gault Millau is an indispensable standard work today and "Alles über Wein" is an excellent magazine! The two prize winners emphasized: "Our commitment will only flag when German top wines have regained the status they had a hundred years ago when they were the most expensive wines in the world.

2002 The Feinschmecker and Weingourmet
Ad Personam Editor-in-Chief Madeleine Jakits and Deputy Editor-in-Chief Dieter Braatz. In the laudatory speech, the critical support of the wine industry of both magazines was acknowledged and their extremely important mediating function for the product wine was emphasized.

2001 Report series "Report on the situation
by six journalists of the Frankfurter Allgemeine ZeitungWith their weekly "Bericht zur Lage", the authors: Georg Küffner, Oliver Bock, Dr. Daniel Deckers, Dr. Horst Dohm, Alfred Behr, Dr. Roswin Finkenzeller have managed, through extraordinary journalistic commitment and thorough research, to draw the attention of their readers to "Origin Germany", which in the case of top German wines is naturally based on the terroir, their origin, their location.

The VDP.Gold Badge of Honour is a special honour and at the same time the highest distinction for our VDP.Winegrowers and honours exceptionally high commitment. Personalities who have been awarded the VDP.Gold Badge of Honour have spread the credo of German top wines across borders through their work and have rendered personal service to this cause.

Wearer of the VDP.pin of honour in gold

2016  Jancis Robinson

2013  Hilke Nagel

2007  Michael Prinz zu Salm-Salm

2004  Dr. Alfred Biolek

1993  Michael Broadbent (†)

1993  Hugh Johnson

The VDP.Silver Badge of Honour is an award that our VDP.winegrowers give as a thank you and recognition for services to the German top wine: Personalities who are awarded the VDP.Silver Badge of Honour stand for upstanding commitment to the benefit of the association. As an expression of great esteem, the association awards this pin of honour.

Träger der VDP.Ehrennadel in Silber

2019 Dr. Daniel Deckers

2017  Paula Bosch

2016  Gert Aldinger

2014  Roland Koch

2012  Michael Graf Adelmann

2009  Georg Mauer

2008  Christina Fischer

2007  Rudi Wiest

2006  Karl Fuhrmann (†)

2006  Gerko Baron zu Knyphausen

2005  Kazuho Hoshino

2005  Dr. Heinz von Opel (†)

2004  Wilhelm Haag

2003  Rudolf Fries

2001  Heinz-Gert Woschek

1998  Wolfgang Siben

1998  Peter von Weymarn

1993  Hans-Jürgen Podzun


Committed without borders: impeccably trained VDP.Ambassadors.

Our VDP:winegrowers always strive for the highest quality in winemaking. The VDP.Eagle on the bottleneck is a visible sign for this claim and for their passion. Since 2016 we have been training an exclusive selection of wine experts from all over the world to become VDP Ambassadors. The demanding program of study, which lasts several days, is carried out in cooperation with the International Wine Institute and under the direction of Master of Wine Caro Maurer. Over the course of two intensive seminar days, the participants are familiarized with all facets of the VDP Member Estates. Moderated tastings, discussions and visits to wineries round out the program and provide participants with a comprehensive set of tools. Graduates of the program can then train professionals and wine lovers in their own home countries and apply their new knowledge in their writing. The program is aimed exclusively at wine professionals working outside Germany.