Posts Tagged ‘Asia’

 

Yes, it’s true. Two of China’s wines have won silver in this year’s Decanter World Wine Awards, Jing Daily reports.

The wines are the Great Wall Terrior 2006 from Shandong and Domaine Helan Mountain Special Reserve Chardonnay 2011 from Ningxia.

A total of 20 wines from China were recognized this year by Decanter out of a total 49 entries.

In 2011, Helan Qing Xue’s Jia Bei Lan Cabernet Dry Red 2009 received the top prize from Decanter, drawing much skepticism and controversy.

While China does not have a great reputation for its wine (real or otherwise), there are domestic vineyards producing quality wines.

 

Read on …

 

South African wine exports to reach now high in 2013.

South African wine exports to reach now high in 2013.

 

South African wine exports are poised to beat their 2012 record this year following high yields and on demand for premium vintages from North America and Asia, industry executives and growers said.

Wine exports rose to 469 million liters (124 million U.S. gallons) in the year ending April 30, up 25 percent from the previous 12 months and more than triple the total shipped in 2000, data from the Wines of South Africa trade body, or WOSA, show. Bulk shipments rose 53 percent while those of bottled and packaged wines fell 5 percent, as large producers bottled more in export markets.

Although wine has been grown in South Africa since Dutch settlers arrived in the 17th century, the country was cut off from trade during the apartheid era of racial discrimination, which ended in 1994 with the first all-race elections. Two decades on, exporters are seeking to consolidate in established markets such as the U.K. and Germany while boosting sales in Asia and Africa.

“If you think about South Africa’s history, we’ve been making wine for 350 years but it’s only really since 1994 that we’ve actively pursued the export market, that we’ve been welcome and accepted,” Johan Erasmus, general manager of the Glen Carlou winery in the Paarl Valley north east of Cape Town, said at a London tasting in March. “We are much more in touch with consumers worldwide.”

A wet winter meant plenty of underground water, helping to boost yields in 2013, according to Su Birch, Chief Executive Officer at WOSA. Yields at the 2012 harvest rose to 14.13 metric tons per hectare (2.471 acres), the highest for at least six years, and probably climbed to about 14.90 tons this year, according to estimates based on preliminary data from WOSA.

 

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Latest ProWein survey covers five Asian markets.

A new survey commissioned by ProWein, the German trade fair company, has revealed that “in-country representation is key to success” for wine producers trying to capture Asian markets.

Research carried out for ProWein by UK-based Wine Intelligence also found that the five markets it surveyed – China, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan – “differ substantially.” The study concludes that it would be a mistake for the wine industry to think of Asia as a single cultural bloc.

It does concede, however, that there are some common trends and characteristics. Across Asia, wine is shaking off its image of being a purely luxury product and becoming more attractive to young consumers, who show “a real interest in understanding it better.”

On the question of local representation, Wine Intelligence suggests that having people on the ground is imperative.

“The wine producers who achieve the biggest success will be the ones who not only get to grips with these trends, but actually take the trouble to establish a physical presence in their target markets,” says Richard Halstead, chief operating officer at Wine Intelligence.

He adds: “It’s not possible to conquer China, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan from an office outside those countries.”

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The History of Chinese Wine.

The History of Chinese Wine.

 

I’ve been reading quite a bit about China recently and not only because they’re the second largest economy in the world (and growing very fast) or because some of the unscrupulous amongst them make really large volumes of really bad quality stuff with which they flood the markets of, especially but not only, developing countries. Thing is, not everybody is unscrupulous and not all Chinese are cruel triad-like taskmasters! I would be devastated if my Chinese deli disappeared and it makes my blood boil when I meet people who seem to think that Chinese
food consists only of sweet-n-sour pork, sticky rice or stir-fried noodles. Good Lord, the Chinese were hosting banquets before we even thought of sharing meals and to belittle an entire culture just because a fanatic and his friends stole just over 50 years of their lives is insanity. The reason most of us haven’t tasted or seen upmarket Chinese products is precisely because the Chinese nation is so huge! They simply don’t make enough to export. Yet. They also produce wine (and are currently the fourth largest producer in the world) and even though, at this stage, it doesn’t really compare to the wines of the west (in fact, the tasting I had was pretty darn awful), I’m sure that they will, given time, get there.  In fact, experts seem to think that China can become the next Chile within the next decade! Before I go on (and to prove my point about Chinese food), here’s a recipe for some really good kebabs from the province of Xinjiang where the Uighur people have lived for centuries; the food, like their language has a Turkic touch.
Read on…

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As he hands over the reins of the country’s top wine importer, Don St. Pierre says China is maturing and evolving

 

When Don St. Pierre Jr. announced in October that he had stepped aside as CEO of ASC Fine Wines, the company he cofounded with his father in 1996, it surprised many in the business. An American ex-pat, St. Pierre has been a trailblazer in building the fine wine trade in China. As one prominent Bordeaux négociant noted, “where ASC goes, we go.”

But in a lengthy interview with Wine Spectator, St. Pierre said the time had come for him to focus on long-term ideas and leave managing what has become a big business to an expert. ASC appointed John Watkins, an American executive who cut his teeth on Northwest Airlines’ expansion into China in the 1980s, as his successor.

A couple years ago, ASC began a big shift, moving beyond China’s saturated first-tier cities into second-tier cities, opening 26 offices and a distribution network to 150 cities. Staffing shot up from 400 to 1,200. “The challenges China presents moving forward are really unbelievable. We’re just beginning to see Chinese consumers develop their own tastes and interest in wine and see wine as part of their life as opposed to drinking wine because of a business occasion,” St. Pierre told Wine Spectator. “We’re always trying to stay ahead. Hiring John is about staying ahead.”

When St. Pierre and his father opened their doors in 1996, they represented just three brands—Beringer, Petaluma and Bollinger. To import their first container of wine, they formed a joint venture, but had a falling out that left them dry. “They actually hijacked our first container, so we didn’t even have wine for our first launch party,” said St. Pierre.

Today ASC has an annual turnover of $200 million, Suntory owns an 80 percent stake, and the company is poised for more expansion. The challenges ahead are both common to family-led companies and unique to China. “One challenge I’ve seen across four different industries in China is to… read on

The Hong Kong wine scene.

The Hong Kong wine scene.

 

There is a burgeoning wine industry in Hong Kong where consumer demand is rising and tastes are changing, while high profile events and bloggers spread the emerging trends, finds Alasdair Nichol

 

THE WINE industry in Hong Kong has come a long way since the dropping of import duties in 2008 and wine drinkers in the city are becoming more adventurous with the expanded wealth of wine options on offer.

The upsurge in wine pairing with Chinese food has opened new doors to experiences that local drinkers would not have otherwise explored.

Also, the traditional wines usually consumed are being caught up by demand for new and more interesting varieties from differing wine producing countries around the world.

Take a peek at the top 10 trends currently making waves in the Hong Kong market.