Chinese wines are ALL so bad... but are they really all? | Wine and Chill

0 comments / Posted by Xavier WU

Chinese wine are bad

“Chinese wines are terrible”

“Chinese can’t make good wine”

“Don’t ever drink Chinese wine”...

I could go on and on and on about what we regularly hear about Chinese wine. And to be fair, most of it is true.

But with every rule, comes the exception, and this wine is certainly exceptional. Forget about the “Great Wall” wine (which is anything but great) you drank during your last business meeting in China. And forget about how it tasted so bad you almost spit it out. Chinese wines can’t be resumed to this joke, some stunning wines are produced there (I’m thinking about some chardonnay). Now let me introduce you the new player in the Chinese Wine game, the mighty Ao Yun wine, which literally means “flying above the cloud”.

 

The wine origin

 

Shangri la Yunnan

 

First, let’s go back to 2008. At that time, LVMH mandated Tony Jordan, an Australian oenologist for a titanic task: he was requested to traverses whole China so he finds an extraordinary land to produce wine. After traveling around the country for 4 years, and discovering that 95% of the vineyards were not fitting the requirements, he came upon a hidden gem alongside the Mekong river, 20 kilometers from Tibet. In Shangri-La, in the Yunnan province, was hidden 4 villages at around 2600 meters of altitude. These 4 villages have a very specific microclimate: the 30 hectares of vineyard dispatched on 320 plots can profit from very low humidity and the same annual average temperature as Bordeaux. Only such a unique place could produce such a unique wine.

 

How is this red wine made?

 

So far from other cities, literally everything becomes challenging. Let’s say you have some equipment problem, you either manage and repair it by yourself, or you’ll have to wait 15 days for a repairman. That’s why they decided to make do with less machinery and more with human knowledge. Whereas some French Bordeaux wines are made with the most precise and up to date instruments and techniques, Ao Yun wine, is more focusing on traditional winemaking techniques. The secret of the wine quality is not the technology, but the grape quality. The local farmers are a great asset, they may know nothing about grape wine, but with their ancestral know-how and traditional techniques, they are most suited than anyone to plant and farm these lands, which have been theirs for centuries.

 

Alright… but how does this wine taste?

 

So what about the wine itself? The 1st vintage, 2013, made of 90% cabernet sauvignon and 10% cabernet franc is both wealthy and elegant. It is a powerful wine with spicy and pepper notes, followed with hints of cassis and finishing with coffee and chocolate. The tannins are suave and the acidity high, which makes it a very balanced wine. It is powerful and refreshing to drink.


So would you be interested if we sold this wine? We don’t have it for now at Wine and Chill, but we still have high-quality French Wine and we still have express wine delivery in Singapore.

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