By Jim Boyce
Great River Hill established itself in Shandong but skipped the popular wine-producing areas on the coast in favor of ~100 hectares in the hilly outskirts of Laixi, a city of less than a million some 100 kilometers inland. The first vintage was 2011 and included a Chardonnay and entry-level and ‘reserve’ Cabernet Sauvignons under the label “Chateau Nine Peaks“. The key investor is Karl Hauptmann, who also has wine projects in Germany, Bulgaria and elsewhere.
East Meets West is owned by Edouard Duval and Gregory Bielot. It has main offices in Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Shenzhen, and representative offices in Hangzhou, Nanjing, Qingdao, Shenyang, Suzhou, Tianjin and Xi’an. It represents more than 50 wineries from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Chile, France, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, the United States and now China.
Wines from Great River Hill have received praise in numerous tastings, including about a half-dozen I have organized, with the key issue being distribution. It now looks like we will be seeing these wines pop up in more bars, restaurants and hotels.
- The donkey and the grapes: Great River Hill not your typical Chinese vineyard
- From ‘Anything good?’ to ‘What’s best?’: A tasting of nine Chinese wines at Capital M in Beijing
- Shandong wine: Great River Hill doubling production in 2013, grapes show “perfect ripeness”
- The Battle of Great River Hill: A China wine tasting in rural Beijing