New wine book shares unconventional knowledge with readers

Wednesday, November 19, 2009
Issue 532, Page 6
Word count: 477
Published in: Macau Daily Times

By Poyi (Natalie) Leung

Baudouin Neirynck, a wine expert from Belgium who has lived in Macau over the past two years, introduced locals to the world of wine by sharing his knowledge in his first publication that was launched yesterday.

According to Neirynck, The Grapes of Wine will tell readers “things that can’t normally be found in a wine book” from the history of wine including a time line, to how to grow grapes.

Neirynck is currently teaching wine studies at the Institute for Tourism Studies (IFT) where the pre-sale of 500 copies of the book was held yesterday.

The Grapes of Wine is his first book ever being published after spending five years on writing the content.

“Wine is my passion and after years of teaching wine in Hong Kong and Macau, I found that I have a lot of data and material that are so interesting, to be put together in a book,” Neirynck said.

The wine expert said he noticed an “increasing awareness” of wine in Macau mainly about “everything that it can bring”.

“There is a culture coming to life in Macau about wine, that’s why I wanted to come up with something that is easy to read, like a coffee table book that you can start reading at anytime and anywhere,” Neirynck said.

“It’s not a traditional wine book in the sense that it’s not only about grape varieties or labels, it’s a lot more about health, service, storage and investment,” he added.

The publication was published in New York and had 15,000 copies of the first print.

Of which, 500 copies were allocated to Macau for the pre-sale yesterday while the rest will be sold mainly in North America, Neirynck said, adding it will also be distributed in the UK, Canada and Australia.

However, the books will not hit Macau’s bookshops very soon as more copies have to be sent from the US after yesterday.

Meanwhile, Neirynck shared with the media a tip for people who would like to pick up a quality wine drinking habit.

“They should start with a kind of wine that is a little bit of dry such as some German Riesling products which have only eight percent of alcohol content and a little bit of sugar that makes it very pleasant to drink,” he said.

“And gradually they can move on to drier wine that will bring more pleasure or complexity,” he added.

At the same time, yesterday’s launching ceremony featured a free tasting of one white and one red wine of Herdade de Sao Miguel, which has its vineyards situated in Alentejo, south of Portugal.

A representative from Portuguese Products of Excellence, a new company in Macau that represented the wine estate, said Macau was a “good market” for Portuguese wine and once the local business was established, they would then explore opportunities in the mainland and Hong Kong.

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