TN: Ao Yun wine launch dinner with Jean Guillame Prats

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k s h i n
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TN: Ao Yun wine launch dinner with Jean Guillame Prats

#1 Post by k s h i n » April 12th, 2016, 7:22 am

AO YUN WINE LAUNCH DINNER WITH JEAN GUILLAME PRATS - Marcel's Restaurant, Washington D.C. (4/11/2016)

Michael Sands of Calver Woodley wine shop invited me to the launching of Ao Yun wine from Shangri-La, China. Jean Guillame Prats who is now the head of LVMH Estates and Wines flew in and lead the dinner tastin. This was the first time that I had the pleasure of meeting him and I must say that he is one of the most charismatic people in the wine world that I have ever met. Ao Yun is produced in Shangri-La, the foothills of Himalaya. The 13 has 90% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Cabernet France. The vines were planted ten years ago. It aims to be the best red wine made in China and perhaps one day, one of the best wines in the world. Jean Guillame compared Ao Yun to the inception period of Grange Hermitage. The wine was very interesting and technically correct. The production is small and my feeling is that it will be easily sold out in China. It will retail for $280 in US which will not be an easy sell. Nevertheless I have to admire the passion and the dedication of Jean Guillame and his crew.

Robert Wiedmaier, the chef proprietor and the staff did an excellent job hosting us. Both the food and the service were impeccable.
  • 2006 Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon - France, Champagne
    Ben Giliberti who used to write the Washington Post wine column mentions that it feels very Chablis and I agree. Very fresh and mineral, white fruit driven, at this stage apple and pear with only a hint of citrus. Medium concentration, fine mousse, nice mineral expression, bright acidity and lovely clean long finish. Very pure, fresh and mineral driven Dom. I would love to revisit in a year or two. (93 pts.)
  • 2012 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc Te Koko - New Zealand, South Island, Marlborough
    Distinct NZ SB cat pee, grass and gooseberry. This is a bit denser showing a bit of oil and honey. If you don’t care for NZ SB, this is not the wine for you. (90 pts.)
  • 2013 Ao Yun Cabernet Sauvignon - China
    Truly an ambitious and perhaps a bit crazy project of LVMH that is spearheaded by Jean-Guillaume Prats.

    http://www.decanter.com/wine-news/moet- ... -wine-765/

    90% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Cabernet France, from the vines planted ten years ago. Bright red fruit driven nose, cherry and cranberry, a hint of green pepper vegetal, perhaps cumin, lead pencil and earth. One bottle showed medium concentration and the better bottle showed excellent concentration. The impression for me combines the nose of a very good non-classified left bank Bordeaux and a perfectly ripe high end Loire Cab Franc. It reminds Jean- Guillaume the bright red fruits of Pic Saint-Loup. It will be interesting to follow the projects as the vines mature.

    $280 US MSRP. (90 pts.)
  • 1996 Château d'Yquem - France, Bordeaux, Sauternais, Sauternes
    This is a really good d’Yquem. Generous nose displaying sweet yellow and red fruits, apricot, mango, papaya, crème brulee, ginger candy, tea and honey. Excellent concentration, polished airy palate, good acidity and lovely long finish. The 96 is an always delicious d’Yquem. (95 pts.)
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Last edited by k s h i n on April 12th, 2016, 7:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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TN: Ao Yun wine launch dinner with Jean Guillame Prats

#2 Post by StevenB » April 12th, 2016, 7:34 am

k s h i n wrote: [*]2012 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc Te Koko - New Zealand, South Island, Marlborough
Distinct NZ SB cat pee, grass and gooseberry. This is a bit denser showing a bit of oil and honey. If you don’t care for SB, this is not the wine for you. (90 pts.)
In my opinion, it should read "If you don't care for Cloudy Bay and its imitators, this is not the wine for you." I think Cloudy Bay has somewhat "ruined" the Sauvignon Blanc taste of many young wine drinkers. I really admire the brand for its trend setting ability and for defining a world-wide standard for that kind of Sauvignon Blanc (as you say, cat pee, grass, gooseberry, some passion fruit, maybe). But I think Cloudy Bay also painted a picture of Sauvignon Blanc that's just not representative of the grape even though a lot of wines around the world make their Sauvignon Blanc taste like Cloudy Bay. I know so many people who say "I don't like Sauvignon Blanc, it tastes green". Then you serve them a Sancerre by Francois Cotat, Gérard Boulay, Alphonse Mellot or any other good Loire producer and it opens an entirely new world for them. It's not Cloudy Bay's fault, but that's what I'm experiencing.
S. Bauer

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TN: Ao Yun wine launch dinner with Jean Guillame Prats

#3 Post by k s h i n » April 12th, 2016, 7:38 am

Steven,
I meant NZ SB, not that I have sampled a lot but based on a dozen also. Burgundy is not a Pinot Noir and Loire is not a SB.
Kevin
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TN: Ao Yun wine launch dinner with Jean Guillame Prats

#4 Post by Chris Seiber » April 12th, 2016, 12:57 pm

At $280, it sounds a lot like the debut Yao Ming Cabernet from Napa.

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TN: Ao Yun wine launch dinner with Jean Guillame Prats

#5 Post by c fu » April 12th, 2016, 1:59 pm

Chris Seiber wrote:At $280, it sounds a lot like the debut Yao Ming Cabernet from Napa.
except it is from grapes from China.
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TN: Ao Yun wine launch dinner with Jean Guillame Prats

#6 Post by Chris Seiber » April 12th, 2016, 2:09 pm

I went ahead and put in "from Napa" in my post to make it clear I was aware of that one difference. :)

Otherwise, it sounds very similar. An inaugural wine meant to represent super-premium luxury cabernet for the Chinese market, priced like a cult wine at the outset (almost the exact same price as the first Yao Ming release), though not necessarily with a quality that suggests anywhere near that price point.

Anyway, I'm always glad to see efforts to make great wine in new places. The market will ultimately have its say as to what price the wine will support - you can buy Yao Ming cabernet for $50 now, just a few years after they debuted at $280.

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