Changyu Pioneer-Moser XV, makes largely Bordeaux-style wines that are also critics’ favourites. Located in Ningxia, the chateau is a partnership between Changyu Pioneer Wine, China’s oldest and largest winery founded in 1892, and 15th-generation Austrian winemaker Lenz Moser. The company’s more than a century of experimentation with growing grapes in regions and climates across China has translated into wineries in
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This episode I am joined by winemaker extraordinaire Lenz Moser. He comes from an Austrian winemaking family who really changed the wine landscape for Austria. He is currently chief winemaker for Chateau Changyu Moser XV in China, and certainly putting the wine region Ningxia on the map. You will learn all about the incredible wines he is making, along with a much deeper look into the Ningxia region itself.
If you want to skip ahead:
2m42: How Lenz got into winemaking, his journey and his mentors.
10m30: How Lenz started working with a Chinese winery
16.m40: Discussing White Cabernet Sauvignon
Tasting Moser Family Blanc de Noir 2018 £42.50 Tannico.co.uk
26m14: Lenz Moser aka Mr Gruner, talking about his native grape in Austria: Gruner Veltliner
28m54: Talking about Lenz new Gruner project with Markus Huber: New Chapter
31m50: The wine regions of China with focus on Ningxia
La Cina è sempre più vicina. Non parliamo del mercato del vino, quanto della viticoltura cinese. Un settore sta facendo passi da gigante, tanto da non poter essere ignorato. Anche per questo Gruppo Meregalli, membro della Società Excellence, sta allargando i propri orizzonti. Dalla fine del 2020 sono disponibili all’interno del catalogo Meregalli i vini di Château Changyu Moser XV.
Das chinesische Weingut Changyu hat Pläne für einen Wein-Themenpark bekanntgegeben. Laut Drinks Business soll die Gestaltung bis Ende März vollendet sein, die Eröffnung ist für August geplant. Der Park befände sich auf einem untergründigen Korridor mit einer Fläche von 7‘000 m2 im Bezirk Yang
Changyu ist laut Drinks Business das grösste und älteste Weingut Chinas. Die Gründung von Changyu reicht zurück auf das Jahr 1892. Per 2020 habe das Weingut eine Anbaufläche von weltweit 20‘000 Hektar und produziere damit jährlich rund 150‘000 Tonnen Wein und Brandy.
Allow us to introduce you to the first white Cabernet Sauvignon from China – and my god is it beautiful. Firstly, the vines are around 15 years old – which is pretty unheard of when it comes to rosé. The vines themselves are located in the Ningxia province with Lenz M. Moser continuing to establish his name as a pioneering force of nature for Chinese wines. Estate bottled for that final seal of quality, you can expect grapefruit peel, exotic fruits and an array of crushed raspberries and apple. Zippy and refreshing with texture – and as you know, texture is everything. AS
Im August 2021 soll der Wein-Themenpark von »Changyu« in Shanghai eröffnen. Erste Pläne wurden bereits bekannt gegeben, allerdings wird das Design erst Ende März finalisiert, heißt es auf der Website »thedrinksbusiness«. Das komplette Areal erstreckt sich über 7000 Quadratmeter und befindet sich in einem unterirdischen Korridor im Hafen Shanghais, zwischen dem »Gongping Road« und dem »Qinhuangdao« Anlegeplatz.
Der Park soll laut ersten Auskünften in zwei Themenbereiche geteilt werden. In der »Erlebnis-Area« soll mit Hilfe neuester Technologie das Know-how über Weinsorten, Terroir und Weinherstellung vermittelt werden. Auch werden Eichenfässer aller 13 Changyu-Weingüter ausgestellt. Der zweite Teil des Parks wird sich auf Food-Pairing spezialisieren. So werden in einem Gastrobereich verschiedene Mahlzeiten mit passendem Wein serviert.
Changyu City Winery will appear on the North Bund. At present, the design of the theme park is in development, and the final design will be completed at the end of March and officially opened at the end of August.
In August last year, Changyu signed a co-construction agreement with China Jinmao’s Shanghai International Shipping Service Center Development Co., Ltd. and Shanghai International Wine & Spirits Trade Development Co., Ltd. to develop the wine theme park.
The site is still under construction, and the park is expected to open its door at the end of August.
The new Changyu Shanghai outpost is located in the underground corridor between Gongping Road Wharf and Qinhuangdao Wharf, spanning around 7,000 square meters. The park will split into two areas which focus on immersive experiences and food and wine pairing respectively.
The experience area will display seasoned oak barrels from Changyu’s 13 wineries around the world, and through the integration with advanced technology, the aim is to impart the know-how of wine varieties, terroir and winemaking knowledge.
The dining area is going to serve up a variety of light meals and wines, hoping to showcase the variety of food and wine pairing.
Changyu is China’s oldest and largest wine producer. In 2020, Changyu’s global wine grape planting area was about 20,000 hectares, and the annual output of wine and brandy is about 150,000 tons.
One of my more interesting Zoom tastings last year was with Austrian wine producer Lenz Moser. We weren’t tasting Austrian wine, though: instead it was Chinese wine. Moser has decided to focus on Chateau Changyu Moser XV in Ningxia in China, where he makes the wine as well as looking after global sales.
“Twenty-fifteen was the breakthrough vintage for us,” he says. “We harvested two weeks later than usual, because the moon festival was early, and all of the pickers disappeared to celebrate. The wine was instantly better, with more alcohol and ripe tannins – previously it had been 12.5 per cent and herbaceous like a Loire Cabernet Franc.
“Grapes here mature quickly because the air is so dry. If you get a hot wind from the mountains, you end up with raisins. This vintage  will have low sugars and ripe tannins. It’s exactly what I was looking for. There are huge vintage variations here every year.”
Uniquely, they bury the vines every winter, when temperatures can go down to -28 degrees. “We grow the vines at an angle of 25 degrees and then bend them 25 degrees more and put 30-40cm of soil on top of the vine. The vine sleeps for four months and then we plough it off again at the end of March. Within a week you get budbreak. Organic is a big thing in China and last year we made a decision to go biodynamic. In a dry desert vineyard it is absolutely doable. The problem is to find the right cover crop and we are very close to that.”
At the moment they grow almost 100 per cent cabernet sauvignon. “Ningxia is perfect for Cabernet: we get 3,000 hours of sun a year, we are a height of 1,100 metres, with cool nights and hot days, which preserves the acidity. I am big fan of Bordeaux and Chile; when you taste it you know immediately where it comes from. This region has the smallest Cabernet Sauvignon berries I have ever seen, with thick skins and therefore a great skin-to-juice ratio. Here in China they don’t want tannins – it doesn’t go well with the cuisine and they don’t like the flavour. They like big boys with lots of alcohol and ripe fruit.”
Changyu produces a range of wines selling from €16 up to €165 – for a wine called Purple Air Comes from the East. Of it he says: “This it is the future of my wine, a Cabernet Sauvignon that is all elegance and freshness. That is what I have learned from Bordeaux. You can drink it and not just taste it. I always have to have something elegant in my glass.”
Kanaan Winery, a neighbour of Changyu, produces the Riesling below.
Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc de Noir 2018, Chateau Changyu Moser XV, Helan Mountain Range 13.5%, €19.99 More of a rosé than a white, with attractive dried flower aromas, and plump, textured peach and strawberry fruits, finishing dry. This would go nicely with richer seafood dishes; scallops or grilled salmon. From wineonline.ie; the Malt House, Trim; Jus de Vine, Portmarnock, jusdevine.ie; Martin’s Off Licence, Dublin 3, martinsofflicence.ie
Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, Chateau Changyu Moser XV, Helan Mountain Range, Ningxia 14.5%, €22 Clean, ripe blackcurrant fruits, a touch of spice and soft, ripe tannins on the finish. Some rare beef, or roast stuffed mushrooms. From wineonline.ie; the Malt House, Trim; Jus de Vine, Portmarnock, jusdevine.ie; Martin’s Off Licence, Dublin 3, martinsofflicence.ie.
Kanaan Winery Riesling 2018, Helan Mountain, Ningxia, China 14%, €30.95 Medium- to full-bodied with light floral aromas and rich apple and pear fruits cut through with citrus acidity. Try it with stir-fried prawns or lightly spicy chicken. From Blackrock Cellar, Blackrock, blackrockcellar.com; the Corkscrew, Dublin 2, thecorkscrew.ie; Mitchell & Son, Dublin 1, Sandycove, and Avoca, Kilmacanogue and Dunboyne, mitchellandson.com; Redmonds, Dublin 6; redmonds.ie; the Malt House, Trim.
Chateau Changyu Moser XV Family 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, Ningxia 14.5%, €35 Very smooth, elegant blackcurrants and cassis, with plenty of structure, and ripe tannins coming through on the long, dry finish. Decant and enjoy with roast beef or lamb. From Jus de Vine, Portmarnock, jusdevine.ie; Martin’s Off Licence, Dublin 3, martinsofflicence.ie.
Chateau Changyu Moser XV, Helan Mountain Blanc de Noir, Ningxia, China 2018 92 £17.99 Ocado
This still blanc de noir Cabernet Sauvignon is part of Austrian Lenz Moser's collaboration with Changyu. White peach and strawberry aromas, camomile and yellow-fruit sweetness. Round and full, with citrus and stone fruit, plus crunchy apple acidity. SW Ale 14%
WINEMAKER LENZ MOSER TALKS MARTIN GREEN THROUGH THE PROJECT PUTTING QUALITY CHINESE WINES ON THE WORLD MAP
An Austrian winemaker is bidding to make China famous for quality Cabernet after launching an ambitious project in the landlocked region of Ningxia. Chateau Changyu Moser lies just south of Mongolia, in a desert climate that receives 3,00 hours of sunshine per year. It gets so cold in the winter that the team is forced to bury the vines underground. They are uncovered in late March and start budding immediately. Chateau Changyu Moser is the brainchild of Lenz Moser, whose family has made wine in Austria since . He rst went to China years ago in an eort to convince the country’s leading wineries to import his wines and sell them on the local market. China’s largest producer, Changyu, agreed to the proposal, but in return Moser was asked to sell its wines in export markets. Securing repeat orders was a struggle as the quality was not up to scratch. “Fieen years ago, there was not much fun in drinking too much Chinese wine,” says Moser. “Everybody who was an expert at the time will second that.” He helped Changyu improve the overall quality of its wines, and the leadership team asked him to set up a winemaking project from scratch. The aim was to make wine of signi cantly higher quality than anything China was producing at the time. Moser relished the challenge, and identi ed Ningxia as the perfect location.
He snapped up a ha plot in and put a team in place. The chateau itself looks like it should be in the Loire Valley, but Moser takes his inspiration from Bordeaux. Moser aims to produce high-end Cabernet that can compete with the best Bordeaux blends in international markets, and he has already enjoyed considerable success. Chateau Changyu Moser is sold in ¢ countries around the world, and its flagship wine – Purple Air Comes from the East – has secured a listing at London retailer Hedonism, with a £ price tag. “I was working on Purple Air from day one in order to prove the point that this region and this chateau will play in the top leagues as well,” says Moser. “It had to be elegant and fresh and convey the typicity of the area. We only produced ,¥ bottles of the to begin with, but I have now a weapon in my arsenal where I really can target the top end of the market and benchmark myself with other top-end wines – not in order to impress people, but to let them judge.”
This is Chateau Changyu Moser XV’s icon wine, along with the recently released 2016 Purple Air Comes From The East label. The 2016 Grand Vin is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. It has a deep garnet appearance and pronounced nose of distinct clove, toast and smoke—this vintage saw some 24 months in 80% small-format new oak—along with a touch of leathery development overlying a core of ripe mellowing cassis and herbaceous bramble fruit. On the palate, it is full-bodied with a robust but fairly well-integrated 15% alcohol, very Cabernet tannins (coating, crunchy and angular) and some buoyant acidity that lifts up the core of mellowing ripe black fruit complemented by marked toasted oak and some developing savory notes. With its long length and significant concentration, this wine is higher in quality than the 2016 Purple Air Comes From The East release. It can be drunk now but will repay cellaring over the next 5-6 years, at least.