China’s growing interest in the wine world (they have invested heavily in the Bordeaux region of France) is not slowing down. Connoisseurs have moved on from big bidding at auction to wine making themselves. London retailer Berry Bros. & Rudd is carrying at least six Chinese wines and searches on popular wine websites are rich with Chinese results.
The most impressive move the Chinese have made in the wine world, however, involves one of the world’s most iconic luxury brands. Moet-Hennessy has released Ao Yun (Above The Clouds) 2013 – a Bordeaux-style red, priced at $300 a bottle.
Made with grapes grown in the Yunnan province in Southern China on the edge of Himalayas, this is a one-of-a-kind adventure for MH.
A lack of electricity forced pickers to harvest grapes by hand and because they couldn’t buy ‘used’ oak barrels, the wine was aged for a shorter period of time (just six months) in new oak.
Jean-Guillaume Prats, president of Moët & Hennessy’s Wine Estates, is excited about the bottling saying, “There is no manual or benchmark here because we are the first. So we are learning everything as we go along. Really, this is a great adventure.”
The 2013 Ao Yun was first released in European and US markets in September and October of 2016 and earned a 94 on the Robert Parker wine scale. The vintage was just released in the China and Asia market early this year.