Introduce Yourself

Snooth User: PortfolioWines

Cheers to all of you!

Posted by PortfolioWines, Apr 30, 2009.

Always glad to find new avenues to meet like-minded people who love wine. I can't wait to discover exciting products and ideas from you. I just set up a new wine distribution in Hong Kong after 18 years as a wine distributor in Canada. I am looking forward to sharing my experiences in this new market, which is poised to grow immensely in the next 5 years.

I would also appreciate any advice, recommendations and any notifications on events around the globe.

Your fellow wine lover,
Leo B.

Replies

3
49
Reply by Hugo Sauaia, Apr 30, 2009.

Hello Leo, I just got here as you. I´m a lawyer and wine lover from Brazil, very interested in meeting people around the globe and talking about wine. See you around.

2031
3202
Reply by Philip James, Apr 30, 2009.

Leo - welcome. As a Brit (now living in NYC) I have a lot of friends who are based in HK. I remember reading they the import tax was recently abolished, what has affected the market more? The negation of the tax, or the more slowly changing consumer tastes?

10
19
Reply by PortfolioWines, Apr 30, 2009.

Hi Philip,

Thanks for the note. HK is slowly embracing wine and will probably make into the mainstream market within the next 3-5 years. My goal is to expose as many customers to wines other than Bordeaux, which is what most wine drinkers prefer to drink. The no tax on wine has lowered the retail price, though not by much in major shops.

Since I mainly focus on unusual varietals and blends, I have brought into Hong Kong several exciting selections not normally available in the market. The one thing that needs to change there is the high mark up on wines in bars and restaurants. I hope to convince them to lower the price to accommodate emerging young consumers who are ready.

Cheers,
Leo

20
3258
Reply by dmcker, Apr 30, 2009.

Greetings, PW, and welcome! Since I'm based in Tokyo and have made many trips to Hong Kong over the years I am aware of a few of the issues you face there. Good luck, and best wishes for success in your mission.

A question I've had to face in the past couple of years with friends in the industry here: how much false labeling are you encountering these days? Fear levels here are much higher for Shanghai, but I've also heard a few stories about Hong Kong. Nearly no-one here will buy anything off the Internet from either location.

10
19
Reply by PortfolioWines, Apr 30, 2009.

Thank you dmcker. The continuing madness for top Bordeaux labels certainly creates this kind of fraud to unsuspecting novices. Thankfully, I do not carry the big boys as I prefer to showcase top quality wines without the name, but have a strong following among true connoisseurs. I believe that it's time for HK to start enjoying other excellent wines, and I will do my best to encourage this change. Shanghai and other major cities in the mainland will take a little longer. Who knows?

20
3258
Reply by dmcker, May 1, 2009.

Sounds smart, Leo, as well as being pro-active in carrying on the good work of expanding people's knowledge and education about all the many good wines from so many parts of the world.

BTW, it's not always unsuspecting novices who get defrauded. Recent lawsuits have been in the news in the US at the highest levels of great-wine collecting, while one man I know who grew up in Bordeaux (his father was a city councilman there, though non-French) and is in the wine business in Tokyo now--and thus should've known better--got nailed a couple years ago. 'When it looks too good to be true, it probably is', he learned the hard way. He now only sells to and never buys from China.

20
3258
Reply by dmcker, May 1, 2009.

Oh, and what's this I hear (and taste!) about a dropoff of quality in Shaosing wine since the Olympics?

2031
3202
Reply by Philip James, May 1, 2009.

I just read this: http://www.winebusiness.com/news/?g...

Claims that exports to HK grew by 500% year on year as a result of the removal of the import tax

8
11
Reply by Gingerossa, May 1, 2009.

dmcker - if your tastes are looking to take a break from wine and want some really good Japanese Microbrew in Tokyo - visit Bakusyu Club Popeye - otherwise known as Popeye's Forty Beers Club. Be sure to try the grilled avacado.

10
19
Reply by PortfolioWines, May 2, 2009.

True, the removal of tax on wine in HK last year had a big impact on imports. There has also been a surge of wanna be importers who came from other industries and no wine experience. HK is really moving ahead with their plans to make it the wine hub in Asia Pacific. They have chosen 2009 as the Food & Wine Year, with many food/wine events in various locales leading to the International Wine Expo in early November. The buzz is really there!
Cheers!

20
3258
Reply by dmcker, May 4, 2009.

Thanks for the recommendation, Gingerossa. I've heard of Popeye's, but never been there, since it's on the other side of the metropolis in an area I have no reason to visit (unless I want to see live sumo wrestling, which I'm afraid I haven't for several years). Plenty of other pubs serving good beer on tap in parts of town I do visit, so I've gotten lazy. Thanks for reminding me of the place, and I'll have to make an expedition of it with some other beer-loving mates, of which I'll admit I know more than a few... ;-).

20
3258
Reply by dmcker, Aug 13, 2009.

Some interesting, if softish, data on wine consumption in China:
http://www.wines-info.com/Newshtml/...

The website is a bit primitively designed, but the data are interesting. Also looks like there might be a demand for English-language editing and translation services in China, too... ;-)

20
3258
Reply by dmcker, Sep 4, 2009.

Looks like a big wineshow in Shanghai in October:
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/2009-...


Back to Categories

Popular Topics

Top Contributors This Month

259386 Snooth User: zufrieden
259386zufrieden
41 posts
1413489 Snooth User: dvogler
1413489dvogler
26 posts
89564 Snooth User: GregT
89564GregT
7 posts

Categories

View All




Snooth Media Network