Top Wines 2014/2015 Peak G Wine Awards

2014 – submissions of 300 wines; 100 selected at the top 100 wines in Singapore. Some excellent value wines included Massenez Family Flaviata Cabernet (Red and White International); Donnafugata Tancredi (Cellarmaster Wines); Olsen Personal Reserve Vin 888 Cabernet (Hock Hua Wines); Champagne Fallet Dart Brut Rose (World Wine Vault); Cantine Sant Agata 9.99 Ruche di Castagnole Monferrato (Wine Tatler); Balbi Soprani Barolo 08 (Hock Hua Wines);  Concha Y Toro Marques de Casa concha Pinot (Vina Concha Y Toro Group);  Vina Tabali Pinot (Le Vigne); Georges Duboeuf Morgon ‘JE Descombes’ (Le Vigne); Jean Paul Thevenet Morgon (Artisan Cellars); Casa Santos Lima. Sousao (Viva Vino) ; John Val, Nanny Goat Pinot (Red and White International); Surveyor Thomson Single Vineyard PInot (Singapore Straits Cellars); Pago de los Capellanes, Joven Roble Tinto (Cellarmaster Wines); Paolo e Noemia, Falesia d’amico Chardonnay (Angra Wine & Spirit); Donhoff Riesling Trocken (Wein & Vin) and Olsen Old Bailey Muscadelle (Hock Hua Wines).

Top wines of the year included Marchesi di Barolo, ‘Cannubi’ (Indoguna);  Shaw Vineyard Estate Premium Botrytis Semillon (World Wine Vault) and Van Volxem ‘Alte Reben’ Riesling (Wein & Vin). Other outstanding wines were Mazzei Siepi (SUTL); Misha’s Vineyard Highnote Pinot (Crystal Wines); Henri Billiot Millesime Brut 07 (Artisan Cellars),  and Marques de Riscal Gran Reserva (SUTL).

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2015 –  Wines of the year  were the Askerne Noble Semillon (Hock Hua); Newton Johnson Famile Vineyards Chardonnay (Stellez Vine); Marchesi di Frescobaldi, Luce Della Vite, Luce (Water and Wine). Pick up the 2015 Peak G Wine issue to read the tasting notes the rest of the top 100 wines of 2015

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Masamiya Gourmet

Fresh seafood, delivered to your doorstep by Miya who brings in produce from Japan twice a week. Over the last few months, we have had the opportunity to taste various tuna (from Bluefin to Bigeye). Here are the pics of Buri (wild) as compared to Hamachi and my attempt at buri sashimi and tuna poke. Contact Masamiya Gourmet here.FullSizeRenderFullSizeRender-3A recent seminar on Fisheries and food from Ishikawa and Fukui Prefactures was organised by Masamiya Gourmet.  Rather than tell you about what I learned, here are some Did You Knows

Did you know that

a. Snow crabs from Ishikawa pref. are called Kanou and the crabs are caught during Nov-March. Female crabs are called Koubako and the season for the females end on 29th December.

b. Yellowtail fished in winter in Ishikawa pref. are called Kan-Buri and this is the time when they are at their fattest.

c. The snow crab in the Fukui pref. are known as Echizen (male) and Seiko (female).

d. Echizen Shimp denotes a rare shrimp from Fukui pref. that are even sweeter than the famous Akaebi sweet shrimp.

 

Here are some pics of the seminar held at Kanda Wadatsumi restaurant in Tras Street. No doubt we enjoyed the sake as well!

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Asian Wine Lexicon

The Asian Wine Lexicon is a project to “translate” some of the typical wine descriptors into terms that are more recognisable in Asia.

The wine world at large has always used Western descriptors when talking about and describing wines.  However, many people living in Asia do not know many of these descriptors, as they may not have been exposed to items like Bramble Bushes, Violets, Quince, or even more commonplace items like Raspberries and Blackberries (the fruit and not the smartphone…).

 

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Wine with Umami

How to pair wine with the complex flavours of the fifth taste, umami
by Vivian Song
Relaxnews
Published Friday, October 31, 2014 9:33AM EDT in CTV News , CTV television network Canada
Given that umami was only formally accepted as the fifth taste by the scientific community less than 30 years ago, the enigmatic flavour sensation is at a bitter disadvantage when it comes to wine pairings.
Adjectives used to describe the final flavor profile include expressions like “pleasantly savory,” and “earthy.” That is, unlike its counterparts sweet, salty, bitter and sour, umami is more complex and evades a tidy definition.
Imagine, then, the kinds of challenges umami-rich foods present for wine lovers. How do you choose a wine that complements, rather than destroys, the delicate balance of flavors found in many Japanese ingredients like soy sauce, miso and shiitake mushrooms?

At the inaugural edition of Vinexpo Nippon in Tokyo this weekend — the first time the world’s largest wine fair will host an event in Japan — sommelier Hisao Morigami will teach Japanese wine lovers how to reconcile wine with the fifth taste experience that’s so integral to their native cuisine.
Morigami’s biggest tip? Bypass wine altogether and consider pairing a common Japanese dish like eggplants in sweet soy sauce with a glass of Brut champagne that offers a good complement with its minerality and sharpness, he suggests.
Champagne house creates Umami bubbly
In response to Japan’s growing interest in wine, biodynamic champagne house Champagne De Sousa recently released a limited run of bubbly aptly called Umami, developed specifically with the fifth taste in mind.
Described as having a velvety texture, length, minerality, softness, depth and viscosity, Umami was developed to be paired with dishes that carry its namesake in addition to replicating the mouth-watering sensation produced by umami-rich foods.
Umami wine is made with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes.
In his book ‘Pairing Wine with Asian Food,’ Singapore-based wine expert Edwin Soon also offers tips on how to get around the complex flavor profile of the fifth taste.
One rule of thumb when it comes to pairing umami-rich seafood dishes heavy on ingredients like shrimp paste, for example, is to avoid chewy, tannic red wines as the reaction produces a metallic taste, leaving the mouth dry and rough, Soon says.
Adding a teriyaki sauce, however, could render a seafood dish friendlier to a young Bordeaux or Italian Barolo.
Another general rule of thumb: A dry Pinot Noir, with its silky tannins and good level of acidity, works well with umami-rich foods, as do dry white wines and dry sparkling wines.
The one Japanese food that defies any wine pairing?
Tsukemono — preserved Japanese vegetables.
“The pickles should simply take the place of wine to leave your palate refreshed,” he said.
Here are Soon’s wine suggestions for umami-rich foods:
•    Aligote
•    Bacchus
•    Chasselas
•    Chenin Blanc
•    Muller Thurgau
•    Muscadet
•    Picpoul de Pinet
•    Patrimonio
•    Quincy
•    Soave Classico
•    Sylvaner
Vinexpo Nippon runs November 1 -2 in Tokyo.

Vinexpo/IWSR Survey

Here are the highlights of an extensive study, presented by Vinexpo in March 2014. The presentation was organised by Sopexa in Singapore.

World wine consumption in volume will continue to rise to 2,803 million cases (9Litre cases).

World wine consumption in value in 2008 was $151 billion and is forecast to reach almost US$184 billion in 2017

The worlds top consumers of still and sparkling wines are USA, France, Italy, Germany and China with rises forecast for USA, Germany and especially China for 2017. Note that 80% of the wine consumed in China is locally made.

There is a trend towards drinking higher value wines in the US, China, UK, France and Canada.

ASIA PACIFIC

Asia-Pacific consumption has doubled in 10 years and by 2017 will return more than 100% increase over 2008 figures.

The top Asia-Pacific consuming countries are China, Australia, Japan, NZ, HK, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam, India and Singapore respectively. Consumption of all these countries is expected to grow.

The top 10 wine exporters (by volume) in the world are Italy (233.5), Spain (213.13), France (166.53), Chile (83.9), Australia (79.84), South Africa (46.32), USA (44.52), Argentina (40.44), Portugal (28.54) and Germany (17.64). Brackets indicate volume exported in 2012, in millions of 9litre cases.

SINGAPORE
Singapore wine consumption in 2008 was 0.8 million cases, rose to 1.02 million cases in 2013 and is forecast to reach 1.12 million cases by 2017

Amongst the wines there is growth in the pink wine category. The forecast for 2017, based on 2008 figures is that reds will grow by 21%, whites will grow by 64% and pink wine consumption will reflect an increase of 825%.

Total value of wines consumed in Singapore was US$154 million in 2008. It reached $189 million in 2013 and is expected to hit $207 million in 2017.

The volume/by price point of wines is expected to grow in the >US$10 per bottle segment.

Top suppliers of wine in Singapore by volume in 2012 are Australia (almost 400,000 cases), France (196,000 cases), Chile (100,000 cases), Argentina (58,000 cases) and Italy (51,000 cases).  Between 2008 and 2012, growth in volume was: Australia (14.49%), France (7.1%), Chile (33.3%), Argentina (18.36%) and Italy (50%).

 

Gamberro Rosso 2014

 

Sixty-three producers gathered at the Chijmes Singapore this year, bringing with them wines from all over Italy. This is the 3rd time Gamberro Rosso has brought the roadshow to Singapore and again, wine lovers, the hotel and restaurant professionals and wine trade members got to taste extraordinary wines (3 bicchieri), very good wines (2 bicchieri) and good wines.

Last year during Gamberro Rosso’s 2nd visit, I was given a tour by Mr. Lorenzo Ruggeri, International Wine editor of Gambero Rosso. I tasted and discovered the many faces of Vermentino. They ranged from late harvested Sardinian Vermentino (Carpichera Vigna’ngena) with upfront notes of orange, red apple and ripe fruit and saline notes to a Vermentino from Liguria included a  zesty, wildflower nuanced wine (Cantine Lunae Bosoni, Colli di Luni Vermentino). Not only that a red wine Fattoria Poggio di Sotto, Rosso di Montalcino, became the most memorable I tasted at Gamberro Rosso 2013.

So with high expectations of more discoveries and the anticipation of tasting even more stunning wines, I attended Gamberro Rosso 2014 – and i was not disappointed!

Amongst the many impressive wines for me this year were Cantina Tollo’s fragrant Trebbiano d’Abruzzo C’Incanta 2010, the organic producer Di Majo Norante’s Molise Falanghina Rami 2012, Otella’s aromatic and floral Lugana Sup. Molceo 2011, Cantina Due Palme’s Salice Salentino Rosso Selvarossa Ris 2010, all plum spicy and robust and Tenuta Ulisse’s trio of Montepulciano d’Abruzzos – the Unico, the Amaranta and the Nativae. Each Montepulciano d’Abruzzo was made (fermented) differently – in stainless steel, in oak and in concrete – and each showed different characters due to the respective enological treatment. Additionally Volpe Pasini’s COF Merlot Focus Zuc di Volpe 2006 was impressive with its complex flavours and length whilst Tenuta Carretta’s Barbera d’Asti Sup. Nizza Mora di Sassi 2011 was redolent of small fruit and had a lively nature. These were just some of the amazing wines on show.  There were too many great wines to report on and the omission does not reflect the standard of the wine. And just like in the previous year, I left with the taste of my favourite wine, lingering in my mouth – the Nals Margreid A.A. Sauvignon Mantele 2012 – complex, layered and long finished.