Right Bank Dinner 😋

Leading off the Reds for the night, a 1985 Ch. Beau-Séjour Bécot was lovely, light and balanced tension.

1971 Ch. Figeac was not-surprisingly dense and brooding with the fleshy nose it’s known for. Hints of exotic scents, freshly cut grass, mushrooms and dried blood.

1986 Ch Cheval Blanc was tight and linear, great notes of cranberry from the Cabernet Franc. Tannins are a bit rugged at first glance but settled out quickly as it opened.

1988 Château Pavie really impressed from the gate, surprising to find mint on the finish of the nose and palate. There’s a tight seam of acidity and red fruit lingering which holds the front palate together. Dark fruit notes of Black currant and plum, leather and tobacco with a touch of mint.

Devastating Wildfires and Heatwave Pummeling Multiple Australian Producing Regions

Record High Temps for this time of year are driving wildfires and heat stress

Over 20 wineries, 700+ homes, are sustainaning damage from 70+ Wildfires in Queensland, Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia

Australia is reeling from a new record 3 day high temperature streak.

Parts of The Hunter Valley, Yarra Valley, Mt. Lofty Ranges, Adelaide Hills, Kangaroo Island are grappling with encroaching wildfires.

Hunter Valley Wineries are already dealing with smoke damage. Meanwhile Mt. Lofty, Petaluma and Golding are said to have sustained damage.

In the Barossa Valley we’re hearing of extreme water stress and sunburn to the vines.

Mildura and Swan Valley saw highs of 47°C Friday, rare for this early in the year.

Tumultuous Year in Wine Leads to more personnel changes

Slowing imports and sales in Asia have taken another casualty.

Craig Aldous announced that he has left Summergate, their third CEO in the past five years.

This follows major shakeups at Cofco and ASC.

Over 2000 importers have been reported to have gone out of business in the first half of 2019 according to China Chamber of Commerce of Export and Imports.

Have we hit the bottom yet is the real question?

Chablis 2019 will be a top quality vintage

BIVB says initial quality showing comparable or almost as good as record 2018 vintage.

Time to restock your cellars from these better vintages following closely after two very difficult years in a row.

Frosts did have some impact to reduce the yield but quality of the fruit is high and initial inspections on the wines as they finish fermentation are encouraging.

filled wine glass

VinePair’s 50 Top Wines of 2019 Announced

It’s list season as we approach the end of the decade.

For your holiday season entertainment and gift needs some goodies excerpted from the Top 50.

Laurent-Perrier Grand Siecle, always a good drop. At #11 delivers way above it’s price band. This blend of three distinct vintages intends to recreate the perfect vintage expression of Champagne.

1976 Judgement of Paris Winner Chateau Montelena

A couple of lively Pinot Noirs

Craggy Range Te Muna Road Pinot Noir
Angela Estate ‘Abbot Claim’ Pinot Noir

A Lovely Les Voisins Syrah from Copain

Bodegas LAN Gran Reserva

Hong Kong’s Summer of Unrest to become Winter of Our Discontent

Hong Kong Wine Market Facing Worst Slump in Decades

Strong Headwinds for the HK Wine Market

Retail industry facing prospects of 10% layoffs. Restaurants already have retrenched over 6%.

Recent headlines from Vino Joy, Straights Times and South China Morning Post indicated that Hong Kong’s months long protests have already reduced the GDP by over 2%.

Retailers have seen plunging revenues down by over 15%.

Restaurateurs are facing 30% drops in profits.

Wine importers are not immune from this. To date we have seen some major personnel changes, retrenchment and mergers as cashflows have suffered from the same business drops.

With the holiday season upon us, let’s raise a glass and be thankful for friends and family


Protest brought biggest retail slump in Hong Kong, as mass lay-offs expected