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Preparing for ASI in NZ and Antwerp

Our candidate, Andrea Martinisi and Celia Hay, chair-president of the NZ Sommeliers and Wine Professionals travelled to Antwerp and arrived a few days early to acclimatise, get over the jetlag and prepare.

For a practice session, we teamed up with Reez Choi Kam Fung from Hong Kong, China, runner-up at the ASI Asia Oceania Competition in Kyoto and  Justin Ho Li Vern from Malaysia, placed 3rd in Kyoto for a blind tasting session. 

First at Café KIEBOOMS, a social project that offers hospitality training to new immigrants. They offered a selection of Spanish wines. We then walked to BARAVIN, a local Antwerp wine bar for more tastings.

What was tasted:
Domaine de la Butte, Bourgueil 2017 le Pied de la Butte from Jacky Blot, 100% Cabernet Franc from 35+ year old vines, organic, Showing redcurrants, cherries, wild mushrooms, green capsicum with firm acidity. Wild ferment, unfined and unfiltered.

Alejandro Fernández El Vinculo Crianza 2012, 100% Tempranillo, from the La Mancha DO in Spain. A full-bodied red wine of luscious black plums and cherries, coconut and cinnamon, soft tannins and balanced acidity.

Bodegas Toro Albalá Dos Claveles 2017 from the region Montilla-Moriles. This bodegas specialises in the grape Pedro Ximenez with styles ranging from single vintage PX to dry table wine.

Moulin à Vent Vieilles Vines 2017; Urbezco Chardonnay 2017 D.O. Cariñena in Northern Spain

Vins Mesquida Mora-Mallorca Sincronia Blanc a blend of biodynamic grapes from plots around the island of Mallorca. With 75% Chardonnay,15% Premsal, 10% Giró, stainless steel ferment and four month on lees.

Belgium wines - earlier in the day
From Belgium, the Kluisberg Müller Thurgau displaying the classic characteristic of peach, ripe apples, white flowers and low acidity. Ruffus Chardonnay Brut from Vignoble des Agaises, close to the border with France proves that Belgium can also make impressive méthode traditionnelle wines - Celia Hay