An Introduction to our Tasting Notes

Tasting Notes: Organization When we first started a Dragon Phoenix blog (back in 2007), our somewhat naive aim was to present full tasting notes on the hundreds of wines we get to taste each year in a fully searchable format. We also had tasting notes ready to hand to transcribe from physical jottings made since 2003 – but, sadly, not from our first blind-tasting days back in 1999 (not that, back then, our notes were necessarily that informative!). Then Ryan Opaz (of Catavino fame) pointed out the great resource that is Adegga: not only a site where notes could be uploaded, but where...

read more

That’s Beijing March 2008 Grape Press: Wine and Chinese Cuisines

If you would like to see a copy of our March That’s Beijing column on matching international wines with the four main schools of Chinese cooking, please click here.

read more

July Tips and Tricks

A Bleeding Rose   As summer heats up, thoughts of wine often turn from dark and warming reds to light and refreshing pinks. But recently the European Union shocked Europe’s wineries by suggesting legislation to allow the widespread blending of red and white wines to make rosé. The suggestion brought outrage and storm to the pink wine world. Why? Rosé Champagnes are nearly always actually made by blending, a practice defined under AC law (the Champagne region being largely defined by the art of the blend). But makers of still rosé wines are proud of their own time-honoured ways of...

read more

June Tips and Tricks

  As the temperature rises in Beijing, wine storage and service become a pressing issue! Too warm a serving temperature can destroy the aromas of most wines and too cold a temperature can mute aromas, especially in more complex bottles. For storage before service, a wine cabinet is essential and for long-term storage a unit with humidity as well as temperature control is advisable (plus a storage area without strong light or vibration). With the official ‘air-con’ temperature regulated at 26 degrees Celsius, this ‘room temperature’ proves too warm for serving most bottles....

read more

May Wine Picks

  2007 Santa Cristina “Cipresseto” Rose IGT 189RMB Available from Summergate. Contact 010 6562 1800 orwww.summergate.com This lovely rosé is part of the Santa Cristina range from the Italian family firm of Antinori. This is no sickly-sweet candied-berry rosé but one with serious savoury flavours and balance (made from a mix of traditional Tuscan varieties such as Sangiovese). A perfect companion for a summer’s day, this wine is bone dry, refreshing and lively with a delicate redcurrant and strawberry fragrance. The mouth-watering acidity is well-balanced with the fruit and...

read more