Where is the best place to produce wine in China ?

 

In contemporary China, teams of experts are looking for the best place to grow grapes in the country and to produce wine, in a country where everything is complicated for newcomers.

 

This is a complicated quest with elements of comparison that include the soil, grapes varieties and weather. Betwenn 2007 and 2011, the wine consumption in China has doubled and this figure should increae by 40% before 2016.

 

This is an attractive market, and many actors are looking for the best place to produce wine locally, and this is a complicated quest. Leaders in this area, many french groups are exploring Chine trying to find the ideal location.

 

Domaine Barons de Rotschild has chosen to produce wine in Penglai, a peninsula in Shandong province, when LVMH, a world leader in wine, with brands such as Moët & Chandon, Dom Pérignon and Veuve Cliquot has chosen the Ningxia province, in the south to produce a kind of sparkling wine. LVMH has made another attempt in Yunnan and the first production is under way there.

The specificity of China is that many people are trying different places, but nothing is for sure and people are still experimenting. The weather can be complicated, with the Ningxia being arid, Shandong very wet and Yunnan has a tempered weather, with some tropical elements.

Nothing is for sure and everything is still to be proven in China, even if it seems that currently Ningxia is prevailing. There was some surprise in september 2011 when wine produced from this region won an award in the London World Decanter Award. This seems to be a promising location but Chinese people are unaware about this.

Whatever happens, producing wine with a good quality will take some years and adjustments will have to be made to reach the best possible way to produce wine in any of these regions. 

Whatever the outcome is, producing good quality wine is a long process and years of adjestment at necessary in all the locations where grapes have been introduced.

The first grapes in China have been introduced in 1892 in Shandong province, with Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. The difficulty is to compensate the very high humidity of the area and specific techniques have has to be designed.

For the new areas, the difficulty is that nobody really knows what the quality and the quantity will be.

In a way, success is already there: counterfeit bottles can already be bought when the wine itself is still no produced, this is China too…

It has to be noted that there are several other attemps under way in various locations in China, mostly by Chinese people without real consideration for the growing of grapes and what the best climate should be. Close to your apartment ?

Source : AFP

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