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California comes to Middle Kingdom

2006-07-28 16:33

  The name Ferrari-Carano may bring many things to the mind of an uninformed listener. Some may think of Tuscan scenery and others may imagine the wide open spaces of Umbria.

  However, every now and then you will come along one special human being who will instantly think “Oh! California” And strangely enough, in this instance, that person would be correct.

  The Ferrari-Carano winery is located in Sonoma County, California, and owned by a former a casino entrepreneur/lawyer and his wife. While this is a little far placed from the stereotypical image of a winery owner, it is not to say that there aren't some good drops coming out of Sonoma County, and now, they are available in Shanghai.

  Ferrari-Carano recently signed on to supply the Shangri-La in Pudong and hosted the official Chinese launch of their wine range last month.

  However, China is an intimidating market for the wine industry simply because wine is not popular among the Chinese old generation.

  However, Ferrari-Carano seem to have a grip on this problem, Michael Simons, the China consultant for the Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery, claimed that: “half my task is to launch a form of education program on wine in China to try and lure a larger Chinese consumer base.”

  Ferrari-Carano's first, tentative step into the Shanghai market is coming in the form of six different wines, three whites and three reds.

  The whites, a Fume Blanc, a chardonnay and a chardonnay reserve, are definitely not the strong point of Ferrari-Carano's collection. The chardonnay had an unpleasant, vanilla sweetness and the whites are made a little less popular by mildly extortionate pricing, which begins around the 300 yuan (US$37.04) mark for the low range chardonnay.

  Offering a merlot, cabernet sauvignon and their signature Tresor, Ferrari-Carano has crafted an impressive range of reds. While the labels are fairly bland and the price is again regrettably high, you wouldn't find yourself sending a bottle of this away.

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