Close Menu

Moët to debut red blend from Shangri-La

Moët Hennessy is due to release a Bordeaux red blend made in the Chinese town of Shangri-La close to the Tibetan border in the Himalayan foothills.

Mount Meili in the Chinese town of Shangri-La close to the Tibetan border in the Himalayan foothills

The Cabernet-Merlot from the 2013 vintage hails from the 15-hectare vineyard in Adong in the Chinese province of Yunnan within a Unesco-protected site.

According to the South China Morning Post, the site was selected by Chandon sparkling wine maker Tony Jordan as being the best spot for still reds in China.

An Australian wine scientist who has worked for Moët since 1985, Jordan launched Ningxia-based sparkling wine project Chandon China last October.

Ningxia was disregarded by Jordan as the right spot for reds due to its bitterly cold winters where the mercury can dip to minus 25.

In charge of the project is Jean-Guillaume Prats, who has been president of Moët Hennessy Estates & Wines since 2012.

Sharing a name with the mythical earthly paradise evoked by James Hilton in the 1933 novel Lost Horizon, Shangri-La boats one of the world’s highest airports at 3,300 metres.

“As soon as I started to study the potential of the vineyards and wines, I knew that this wine would deserve an international audience, and that the winemaker would need to be based full-time in Yunnan.

“This is not a project that can be half-done – we had to fully commit to it in every way,” Prats told the South China Morning Post.

Planted on gravel soils at 2,300-2,600m altitude, the vines are spread across 320 tiny plots, while the wine is made at a facility built by Moët Hennessy close to the vineyards.

The land is currently leased form a local baijiu producer, with Prats keen to add a further 15 hectares to the project in the near future.

Due for release in Europe and the US this autumn, the wine will be called Ao Yun, meaning sacred cloud, in honour of Mount Meili, a sacred peak in Tibetan culture.

It looks like you're in Asia, would you like to be redirected to the Drinks Business Asia edition?

Yes, take me to the Asia edition No