November 2007

Go East: China Wine Tours to start in March

November 29, 2007 // 3 Comments

By Jim Boyce China Wine Tours will bring its first official group to the Middle Kingdom this March for a 13-day itinerary that takes in wineries and cultural and historic sites. Last Sunday, I met Marc Curtis of China Wine Tours in Beijing and talked to him about the project. What’s the concept behind China Wine Tours? People outside China don’t know much about the wine here. When I talk about the tour, nine out of ten times people say, “There’s wine in China?” And they sometimes also say, “Leaded or nonleaded?” When we started setting up China Wine Tours, […]

Tasting time: Beijing

November 28, 2007 // 0 Comments

– By Jim Boyce Note: It’s always best to double-check the details with the event organizers.  November 28, 7 PM, Loong Bar – JW Marriott (RMB150) Taittinger Champagne tasting, by Torres, with guest Clovis Taittinger; RSVP with Sophie Sun (5165-519, x208 / November 29, 7 PM, Aria Restaurant – China World Hotel (RMB888) Sacred Hill wine dinner, by Jebsen, with chief winemaker Tony Bish; RSVP with Laurie Chai (8519-8693 / December 1, 6:30 PM, China Lounge (RMB388) Washington State wines and contemporary Chinese cuisine, by ASC; RSVP with Dennis Zhang (6418-1598, x130 / December 4, 7 PM, Le Quai […]

Tasting time: Shanghai

November 28, 2007 // 1 Comment

– By Peter Wright November 29-December 1, Shanghai Exhibition Centre Italian wine exhibition, hosted by the Institute of Fine Italian Wine. The institute will hold a tasting at Otto Restaurant and Bar, December 1 (see for more info). December 1, Otto, 7-9 PM (RMB1008) Mumm Champagneand truffle dinner (bookings via December 1, 7.30 PM, Enoteca Wine Lounge (RMB750) Grand Cru tasting, seating limited to ten; RSVP at 5404-0050. For other info, visit December 2, 4-6 PM, The Kitchen Salvatore Cuomo (RMB480) Sunset champagne tasting party, including Palmes d’Or; RSVP at event is RMB380 for Aussino wine […]

How can I sell my wines in China? Part 1

November 27, 2007 // 1 Comment

– By Dan Siebers This is part 1 of 5. Many people wonder, “How can I sell my wines in China?” They’ve heard so much about the booming China market and don’t want to be left behind. But the questions they should ask are, “Should I sell my wines in China?” or “When should I sell my wines in China?” What have they heard about the China market? About the rising income levels? The huge homogeneous population? The amazing GDP growth? There is truth in all these things, but the key point is that China’s success is built on its […]

Another wine and Sprite joke? Put a cork in it

November 26, 2007 // 4 Comments

– By Jim Boyce  Question: Is it true that people in China mix wine with Sprite? Answer: Yes. I have witnessed hundreds of people indulge in this practice that raises the wrath of the wine-loving world. Ironically, most imbibers are foreigners and the smoking gun, so to speak, is none other than… the Champagne cocktail. Ironic, isn’t it? Frankly, I have not witnessed Chinese mix Sprite with an ’82 Latour or any other such vintage wine though I am sure this and other vinological atrocities have occurred. (And they make for good copy, as Business Week , The New York Times, […]

Soaked in Shanxi: Non-vintage weather means challenges

November 22, 2007 // 1 Comment

– By Judy Leissner This year was a tough one for the grapes in Shanxi province, home of Grace Vineyard. Things started very well – in June and July everything was perfect, everyone was excited and we thought we would have an excellent vintage. But in September we had 15 days of rain, making it the heaviest rainfall of the last 15 years. While the white grapes did okay, the red ones suffered. Growing grapes in Shanxi is never easy, but this September’s weather was especially severe. In short, it was the toughest year of the past seven, which roughly […]

An unhealthy marriage: The gap between grape growers and wine consumption

November 21, 2007 // 1 Comment

– By Huiqin Ma A French filmmaker made a documentary about the Sino-French Demonstration Farm just outside of Beijing. He showed how wines were taken to the farmers after the harvest so they and the winery staff could taste them together. The scenes were very warming. However, I cannot help but wonder whether, except for this very special occasion, these grape farmers would have a chance to taste such wine? Even more, I wonder whether or not they liked the taste of these dry red wines? In China the relationship between the winery and the grape farmers seems somewhat like […]

Shanghai: The two best wine deals in town

November 20, 2007 // 1 Comment

By Peter Wright As a big wine drinker, it is pleasing to see an increasing number of bars, restaurants, retailers and wholesalers hold wine tastings, wine promos or offer value-for-money wines by the glass. However, two places stand out way ahead of the pack. They are: (1) Sasha’s (corner of Hengshan and Dongping Roads), which holds a wine buffet every Friday, when it’s an all-you-can drink deal from a selection of about a dozen wines from 6.30-9 PM for just RMB148. A lot of the wines are drinkable lower end labels, with one or two nasty Nelly’s, but most weeks […]

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