Guangzhou, this city with many inhabitants is too close to Hong Kong to properly build a wine distribution network, as Hong Kong offers many advantages: quality network of professionals and ZERO duty!
Several meetings, some disappointing, with surprising questions like "why buy this wine, when I saw in the back, protected by the window of the rare wine display, one of these Second Grand Cru from Médoc that has not interested anyone for over 50 years, at least because it has consistently been mediocre. This definitely has to change. "
That’s the advantage of being at the bottom... we can only go up and that’s for the best. Congratulations to the new generation that will have this handicap and fortunately also the advantage of the 1855 classification!
Lack of retort, difficulty of communicating in a subtle way, I should have found arguments, but tired and a bit destabilized by this disconcerting professionalism, after the reception and the kindness I received in Hong Kong, which had organized 3 tastings :
- attentive sales team (almost too)
- one with a group of customers in one of their fine stores, more casual, young, optimistic,
- and above all, the meal at Chinese restaurant in the Peninsula, so classy where the unobtrusive service was able to bring out our wines with the meal, especially Bellevue de Tayac 2005 Clos du Beau Père-2006, and the Blanc de Valandraud n°2 2006.
Still in Guangzhou, I met a journalist writer, salesman, Chinese professor, who really seems to have fallen "in love" with the wine world. What will he do with the bottle Fayat Thunevin 2006 (Pomerol) sold at a price rather high for this industrial corner of China?
In the evening, we were taken care of by Loulou, a beautiful model who helped us with the harvest in 2007. This friend of Xin, took us around with her friends to good meals (and drink). Such hospitality is surprising, it is rarely offered in our country... Although, I think Murielle and I are rather good hosts!
Planes, trains, subways, services everywhere. For example: the subways are as clean as in Japan, it goes to be said..., complimentary mineral water offered in the trains ...
Everything would have been perfect if I hadn’t seen this bottle of red wine, when I returned to Guangzhou, which made me laugh but is a real problem in China: fakes and counterfeits.
On the same bottle, one could read “Vin de Table - Burgundy - and Cabernet Sauvignon”. I can’t imagine the number of fake Cognac or fake Lafite sold and drank ...
Xiamen, beautiful city an hour away from Hong-Kong and facing the island of Taïwan, the nicely developed beaches could possibly a good place to spend a few days of vacation..
Our hotel, the "Seaside Hotel", looks like one of those buildings built after the war, huge, with the same impact on the landscape than the French buildings built in the 1960s at La Grand Motte.
Our contact, was full attention, delicious meal and a wine list with wines already imported and featuring wines from some of my friends, and it even had a wine shop openly inspired by my shop in Saint-Emilion : L’Essentiel.
I think I will be back to help distribute some of my wines. It’s a pity that the trip lasts 24 hours.