Another hugely busy and successfull week with Jessie FANG's Leading Brands team, wine dinners, staff trainings, consumer tastings, visit to Taiwanese iconic Din Tai Fung and even this year a lecture to the University of Hospitality and Tourism of Kaohsiung.
Expert and state of the art translation by Paul Peng Wang using our new Traditionnal Chinese brochure and introducing our soon to be available website in traditionnal chinese (currently still in simplified chinese)
The chopsticks' favourite wines are gently making their way in Taiwan too...
Hugel | 2011 Taiwan | 640x640 | Plein écran | Wine Media Library
Despite the small size of the market due to a record high level of import taxes, we remain committed to our presence here with a relationship with our local importer Italthai that goes back over 30 years.
Our brand new E-brochure in Thaï has just been made available in Thaï language for an event in Bangkok's newly opened Sivatel with high attendance of trade, press and VIP's including a member of the Royal family.
Delighted to return this year to Manila just a couple of months after the opening of the second Wine Story outlet, this time in Manila's Serendra shopping area. Owner and wine lover Romeo SIA has also now displayed our wines in all of his Healthy Options stores. On the agenda this year staff training, bottle signing, press lunch / interviews, trade and consumer events with Romy and his dedicated (and charming) team...
This second state of the art Wine Story outlet (and website) remains dedicated to excellence in and around wines. No efforts have been spared, from design, wine by the glass Enomatic, wine books and a selection of wines that is truly IMPRESSIVE for this emergeing market with many close friends' wines well represented.
See below a selection of photos taken during this quick visit.
Hugel | Manila 2011 | 640x640 | Wine Media Library
Journalist friend Jenny Tan and husband Charles Lim, this year helped our wine & Asian food gathering at Thion Bahru, just like she did last year (see report)
This year, extra friends joined the brunch, including Edwin Soon, author of the acclaimed book Pairing Wine with Asian Food, Singapore Airlines' Air sommeliers Gerard Ee and colleague Reggie, chocolate expert Dieter Speer of ADM cocoa and despite beeing now well into his 80's, Dr NK YONG whose celebration 80 a few years back remains forever an unforgettable ode to joy.
... and by the way, you may want to accustom yourself with Singlish...
At the occasion of the launch of a two years' promotion of our Gentil by the glass at all the Shangri-La Hotel of Mainland China. Staff trainings, trade events and dinners in 10 cities... in 10 days ! Organised with the great support of Summergate, our greater China agents. Well worth having a new Chinese website for the occasion;-) Gentil Hugel, what else ?
Pictures of the first 5 cities of this wine marathon from December 5 to 14, 2010
Hugel | SH_Roadshow | 640x640 | Wine Media Library
Above picture taken on January 26, 2010 in Saigon with friends Eric Simard and Dong Khoi...
The story is just too nice not to be told...
It all starts in late 2006 when former Auberge de l'Ill employee, Franco-Vietnamese Eric Simard contacts us from Vietnam asking if we were interested to start establishing distribution in his distant Indochina market. Eric now head of Victoria hotels obviously knows the various importers and recommends Franco-Vietnamese Dong Khoi of leading importer Tan Khoa.
No later than two months later, our wines were launched in Vietnam with both of our friend involved. The above center picture was taken in January 2007 with Eric on his yellow Lambretta whose colour is exactly that of our labels... In Vietnam most transports happen on two wheels, including sometimes deliveries as on above right photo with Tan Khoa's boss taken in January 2008 on second market visit. My reaction: Eric, it would be so nice if you, our Hugel ambassador had our logo added to your yellow Lambretta.
And here we go, above is Eric Simard's Lambretta reunion with his two wine friends driven by our "Vienamese ambassador". Needless to say that Hugel wines are to be found at Victoria hotels.
This World of wines is really a very special one, where friendship blends so nicely into our lives and memories. CHEERS and THANKS !
Yet another trip to Japan, this time with the support of our good friend Serge Dubs in cooperation with our local partner agent Jeroboam.
On the agenda this time, a large scale tasting for members of the Japanese Sommelier Association with a record attendance of 320 top sommeliers that came to taste no less than 8 rieslings from our domaine with the authoritive comments of the Best Sommelier in the World 1989.
Another highlight of this visit was a dinner in Nagoya where our friends of the Haeberlin family just opened a year ago an Auberge de l'Ill together with Monsieur Hiramatsu, keeping intact the symbol of their celebrated HH. Another Auberge de l'Ill is due to open this time in Tokyo, the city with most Michelin starred restaurants in the World. Their partnership may in due course challenge Château Robuchon that was just awarded *** Michelin.
The remaining part of this week long stay was visits to clients, winemaker dinners and tutored tastings organised by our importer centered on a Hugel X Asian Cuisine promotion which enjoys a great success.
On the agenda of the last day of this week long stay is a visit to Enoteca with a warm and generous welcome by Hirose-san before a quick stop with some bottle signing at Dean and DeLuca conveniently located in the Tokyo mid-town shopping center. Our wines are currently featured at both of these prestigious retail outlets.
Discover a slideshow of pictures of this visit.
What better launch could there be for a new wine related marketing initiative than Vinexpo ? If success is measured by the number of visitors on one's stand and by the buzz generated we cannot be too far from success as proved above on the short video clip featured on graperadio.com
You will also find here a selection of some of the most memorable moments on our dedicated photo gallery
At a daily lunchtime Asian buffet on our stand we presented our new chopstick holder, an original idea created with the help of our supplier of DIAM. The idea came a few months earlier during an informal Chinese lunch in Taiwan in the company of the owner and staff of our new local importer. In the course of lunch Jessie Fang of prominent importer Leading Brands took one of our cork to support her chopsticks on the table. The idea was born and executed with enthusiasm and efficiency by Jessie and her team.
In order to support this innovative initiative, we have asked our local communication agency to design a supporting document which, with our importers help, is now available in high definition PDF in A5 formats in the following languages: English, French, simplified Chinese , Traditional Chinese (Taiwan), Cantonese (Hong Kong), Japanese, Vietnamese, German, Italian and Dutch. The wide variety of languages now available is a demonstration of the warm reception by most of our importer.
The chopstick holders will start to be available from the end of August on in the following language versions: English/French, English/Chinese and English/Japanese. They will be presented in elegant individual yellow boxes. Each cork will carry the bilingual message "The Chopsticks' favourite wines". We have every hope that this will help the further distribution of our wines in many Asian restaurants, in Asia and elsewhere.
This page will be open to receive the feedback from our importers and clients or just consumers. Blog on !
It is a fact, " world food " and " fusion cuisine " become more and more part of our eating habits and seduce more and more gastronomes the world over. For too long, Asian cuisine was associated with the drinking of jasmine tea or beer and has had little success attracting fine wines consumers. Things are changing at a very rapid pace.
If many food critics mention Alsace wines amongst the best to match with oriental cuisine, we put forward to you the opinion of some of the most knowledgeable and unbiased of them : Dr N.K. YONG and his wife Melina . Their experience and authority go beyond their native Singapore and even Asia. Dr N.K. YONG is for instance the former world-wide president of the influential and respected International Wine & Food Society ... and by the way, a great supporter of our wines.
Yes, our wines are the chopsticks' favourites !
It was titled "Celebration 80, ode to joy" a tribute to a very unique person by some of the World's finest wines and their attending producers.
An amazing list of the who's who of wine producers but also for the happy few (still numbering about 350). A very special occasion of tasting in the presence of most vintners and some of their finest vintages. As if this was not enough, the tasting was tutored by the vintners themselves together with the expert comments of Serena Sutcliffe M.W. and husband David Peppercorn M.W.
Most important an ode to friendship and hospitality of Melina and NK YONG that will long be remembered by all the spoiled attendees.
A short photo gallery of three amazing days can be seen here.
Could there be any better endorsement than this recommendation that was just published on shanghaidaily.com ?
"With wine, most diners tend to go with regular reds, enjoying the drink without bothering too much about the clash of styles. True, some rouges can be quite enjoyable with the considerably lighter Cantonese dishes, but most will agree, however, that a vintage bordeaux is not necessarily the best match for lamb vindaloo.
The best bet is actually an often overlooked one. White wines from the Alsace region of northeastern France are dry, light and fruity - perfect for Asian food.
Instead of ordering a bottle of red with your next Asian meal, why not try matching it with something that goes well with the style of food on the table. Any doubters will be bound to eat their words."
Read the full story here
There are fewer and fewer economists, even in the western world that put into question that the center of gravity of the world's economy is moving towards Asia, and in particular around China.
Similar things can be said when it comes to the dynamism of the hospitality industry. No city has a greater number of fine hotels opening up than Shanghai or Beijing. They act as magnets for some of the world's finest hotel groups and celebrity chefs.
Having always preached the perfect mariage between our wines and Asian cuisine(s), the consumers are now gradually starting to fully enjoy that ideal combination. The message is now also fuelled by our outstanding local importers that are true ambassadors to our wines.
A rencent visit to China, Hong Kong and Taiwan has opened a few new eyes. Our local importers are sharing our enthusiasm and no longer hesitate to organise Hugel wine events centered on Asian or fusion cuisine such as at the celebrated Whampoa Club on Shanghai's Bund.
See an extensive photo gallery of these fascinating visits by clicking here