My second harvest in Ningxia, China whooohooo!
It was great to be back in Ningxia for the 2013 harvest. Dry growing conditions meant the vines were in great shape and this was a welcome change from the 2012 season.
I arrived mid-September and was harvesting Chardonnay at the ‘Jinsha’ winery within the week.
Jinsha means gold sand and is typical of the soils directly south of Yinchuan where the winery is located.
This was the second year of the Ningxia Wine Challenge and my competitors were from Spain and France. Local winery staff were very interested in the different techniques each of us employed and my interpreter was exhausted by the end of day one.
All barrels are now safely through ferment and ageing on some very complex lees. I’m looking forward to my next visit.
Following the white harvest I headed off to Chateau Yuhuang situated along the Helan mountain range 1.5 hours southwest of Yinchuan. Vine health was much improved compared with the previous season.
To concentrate flavours, I choose to leave harvesting until the last possible moment. The end result was ferments full of colour and concentrated flavours.
Can’t wait to get back and see the results, chow down some dumplings, hit the KTV and "gan bei Ningxia wine!".