Saturday, August 15, 2009

More on Chinese Winemakers in NZ

More on Chinese Winemakers in NZ

Received an email from Raymond Chan, a New Zealand-born Chinese and wine judge, wine retailer and wine palate extraordinaire. Raymond has been juding wines in New Zealand since 1989.

"We have a family story when we first started getting interested in wine in the late 1970s. Then, Totara SYC was of course highly respected for its white wines – Riesling Sylvaner and Chenin Blanc especially sought after, being medal winners. My Dad said that one of the Thames family came to our family living in Dunedin, asking if he could board with us while studying at university, our family names being the same, and that our families came from the same area of China. Dad, and our family not having the room turned him away. So our vinous journey could have possibly had an earlier start!"

Raymond also said, "Don’t forget Albert Chan". Albert Chan was the younger son of Stanley Young Chan and sometime after his primary and high school education in Thames he went to Australia to study at Roseworthy. He became Chief Winemaker at Lindemans in 1983 and went on to become one of Australia's most respected white wine winemakers. Albert met an early and tragic death, but his memory lives on with the Albert Chan Memorial Trophy for Best White Wine of the Show, presented at the Sydney Royal Show each year.

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