Wine for Asia 2011 – Asia’s most comprehensive Wine Exhibition and Workshops

My Wine for Asia affair started in 2010, when I was invited to attend the launch for the Wine For Asia 2010 (post here ). I must say in 2010 I was already steadily picking up some wine knowledge but it was really thanks to Wine For Asia that my knowledge expanded exponentially.

Below: Mr Gerald of STB welcoming us to Singapore with a smile! 😉

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In 2010, I didn’t get to attend the actual event in Singapore, due mostly to budget contraints.
Today, I’m much more well-versed with the wines of the world, having been exposed to many wine pairing dinners and wine events over the course of 2 years. And last year, I attended the Wine For Asia 2011 on Oct 28th and the Wine Fiesta on Oct 29th 2011!

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Wine for Asia is an annual event that takes place during October (well, so far each year it has been in Oct). I went last year (short post  HERE)  and came back really impressed. Wine Fiesta @ WFA aims to educate consumers on wine, while offering tastings & bargain wine buys; thus it’s a successful formula for the past 9 years and no doubt for many more years to come.

With the World Gourmet Summit 2012 coming up end of this month, I’m reminded again of my Wine For Asia’s experience, which prompted this blogpost.

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The event was last year, but it’s an annual event so I’m sharing my experiences anyways, as what I want you; my readers, to focus on is what I have seen, drunk and learnt during the 2 days event. And do join me for this year’s, as I will be going with a bunch of wines snobs friends. :DD

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Wine for Asia 2011 is the 9th edition; consisted of  a trade show (27 to 28 October 2011), extensive wine seminars with distinguished guest speakers and wine pairing dinners.
Annually, close to 4,000 visitors from 39 countries will descend on Singapore, where WFA continues its role as the region’s choice platform for wine business and networking opportunities.

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Upon arriving at the conference itself on the first day, I was ushered into the exhibition hall, which was divided into 2 main areas. In 2011, Wine for Asia was running concurrently with a Japanese F&B event, Ganbarou Nippon at Suntec Singapore.

Below: Opening Ceremony of  the 9th Edition of Wine For Asia 2011!

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Below: Ganbarou Nippon is a showcase of Japan’s quality food products, as well as sake and sochu, from various prefectures.

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Meatballs and blanched slivers of high grade beef.

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When discussing Japanese cuisine, Japanese wagyu are an inevitable topic. At this Ganbarou Nippon showcase, the highest grades of wagyu was proudly displayed.

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I was marveling at the marbling here!

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These were cooked ala minute and there was a very very long queue right in front of the booth, for obvious reasons! :DD

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However, this was much more managable. The above was a bit too much fat to me; to the point that when I put it into my mouth, it just oozes liquid fat onto my tongue. Urghh!

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Oh, not forgetting the Kurobuta pork too!

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We explored more of the fair and found more Japanese snacks to munch on.

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Including some Japanese drinks – vinegars, sake and tea!

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If you think you have tried all imaginable green teas, you’re so wrong. This WASABI Ocha literally (and I mean LITERALLY) jolt me up!

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The Ginger and Ginseng one was good too.

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Pack some fresh or dried foodstuff home if you wish.

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Further exploration leads me to this hybrid kiwi from Japan.

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Big, plump and juicy, it’s expensive (about RM20/fruit!) but OMG, so so fleshy and sweet!

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Awesome wasn’t it? I ate and drank and ate and drank! *burps + hic *! :DD

Next, the Wine for Asia hall.

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There were certainly be plenty to look forward to, from the novice to the wine professional. Everyone at every booth was extremely helpful and friendly! All you have to do is ask and keep an open mind.

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There are open sessions throughout the day like this one which is held at the wine booth itself.

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Alternatively, you can opt for a private one-on-one session as well, which I presume would be invaluable for those in the trade or for the wine connoisseurs.

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My brains was in overdrive, ingesting as much as I could as the wine experts and sommeliers rattled off their facts and wisdom of their vineyards, their wines and their industry.

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There were probably enough wines here to fill a dam!

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Happy and on wine-high friends! 🙂

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And hot chicks in leather!

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Get your goblet of Columbian rum from them!

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Happily for me, there were some booth that serves food as well!

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Out of the many booths, this one stood out for me. Maybe it’s because I’m a huge fan of rosé and champagnes. 😀

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This was an extremely fine rosé, divinely lovely in every sip!

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Another one that was interesting was this Hubbly Bubbly Wines booth. Hubblybubblywines is a pan-African wine and spirit specialist.  They represent a selection of multi-award wines, organic wines, pink ports, grappas and brandies.

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To be honest, my attention was all riveted on this 100 years BRANDY Fruit Cake. Unfortunately there wasn’t any for sale there and then, else I would have bought at least 2!

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There were informative short seminars throughout the day as well; such as:

Australian Wine Selection Master Class – “Award-winning Australian Wines” for Asian Cuisine
Bordeaux Wine Master Class by five wine personalities from Bordeaux
Italian Wine Master Class – “The Unheard Story of Italian Wines”
Gambero Rosso Grand Tasting
“A taste of South Africa” – Presentation By Hubblybubblywines
Speaker: Ms Nora Sperling Thiels, the owner of Delheim vineyard in Stellenbosch with history that dates back to 1699.

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So basically, anyone could easily spend the whole day here without any chance of boredom setting in. Just exploring the Ganbarou Nippon showcase took me 2 hours, followed by wine seminars in between, chatting with wine industry experts, and surveying the main wine exhibition area. And that’s Day One gone!

And that’s only the exhibition. As the sun sets, there were networking cocktails and dinner for the media and industry veterans.

A total of 48 wine clinics was held during the show.

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Each session, lasting 20 minutes, for groups of 15-20 people, will provide practical information and tips on wine for visitors. They will be held in four wine clinic rooms throughout the duration of the event. Topics include:

Basics of wine appreciation
Tips to avoid buying a bad wine
Reading labels on wine bottles from various countries – including pronunciation of e.g.French, Italian names etc
Are there really cherry, coffee and cinnamon in wine?
Dos and don’ts in ordering wines in restaurants
Why should we pay more for champagne?
Wine and your health
Women and wine
Planning your own wine party
Wine for weddings
Hilarious wine jokes

That’s not all! Below are the concurrent events with the Wine for Asia 2011:

Vini Challenge Hospitality Sector. This involves a casino-like table, and chips are used. The difference is that the players are served wines in dark glasses and they bet with their knowledge on wine to win – e.g. which country the wine is from, what grape varietal it is, what vintage, etc. The winner in the public category gets a vineyard stay in Australia.

Wine Style Asia Award 2011 
The annual Wine Style Asia Award is a prestigious award which has gained much recognition from wine associations and experts since its inception. Labels who have won this award have gained market interest. With a panel comprising an international and regional mix of influential wine personalities, its stringent judging system ensures only top quality wines receive the sought-after award.

Congratulations to all winners of the Wine Style Asia Award 2011! The three trophy award winning wines are Don Reca 2008, Olsen Wines Yarra Valley Pinot Noir 2006 and Over the Hill Reserve Shiraz 2007. Please click on the button below to view the full list of award-winning wines.
http://www.winestyleasiaaward.com/pdf/WSAA2011.pdf 

For 2011, the timing were as follows:

Opening hours:
Trade: 27 and 28 October 2011, 10.30am to 6.30pm daily
Public: 29 October 2011, 11am to 9pm ($10 for onsite registration)

I assume that these will be the more or less the same format for 2012!

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For more information, please visit Wine For Asia: www.wineforasia.com and Wine Fiesta @WFA 2011: www.winefiesta.com.sg

So who wants to go with me for this year’s?? :DD

Category : Food, Glamour, Travel