Magic Happens!

February 20, 2015
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Years ago, I remember searching high and low through an inordinate number of UK and NZ wine outlets in my quest for older Bin Ends of merit, vintages or oddities. Opportunities were out there, like in the many dusty second hand vinyl records store which saw far much too much of me.

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WineSleuth 10: Diversity of supply

March 21, 2015

The Supply side Last time we talked about currency fluctuations, low inflation environments, fierce local competition and reduced local consumption particularly of higher end wines due to a firmer hand on government ‘gratuities’… This last 5 months we have definitely felt a positive impact due to falling global oil prices. This massive reduction in transport […]

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WineSleuth 11: A small fry perspective

April 19, 2015
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Certain wines rise in price as others fall. That might seem odd to the casual observer. Indeed, the same brands can sell for quite different prices across a number of outlets. How can this be? Sometimes our prices seem too good to be true, other times less competitive. How can anyone make sense of it […]

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WineSleuth 12: Prices Outlook 2015-16

May 24, 2015

Outlook for Prices 2015-16 We reported last year that we expected to see the general price stability of imported wine over the last 3 years largely continue in 2014 with some variation according to price point. It really didn’t do that at all. So why was that? The picture turned out to be more complex that […]

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WineSleuth 1: ‘a bland introduction’

January 20, 2012
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Is wine as interesting as it once was? What are the forces at work which shape the products and marketplace? Is standardization a good thing? Why does stainless steel matter? Who makes the best wine?

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WineSleuth 2: Old mantras live on

February 1, 2012
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New World styles invaded Europe with major global products from huge mega wineries and quickly gained popularity with the new middle-class. As European markets shrank, French marketers looked East…

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WineSleuth 3: The Rise & Rise of Tastings

March 31, 2012
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Experts and amateurs alike are nosing up to the goblet to try their hand at assessing the more intricate qualities of the luscious liquor for education, for fun and (noticeably, in Shanghai) for personal profit too.

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WineSleuth 4: Oz exports ↓: bulk wine ↑

May 5, 2012
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Exports of Australian wine slumped by seven per cent in the year to March, the latest figures reveal. Although average value for both bottled and bulk wine exports rose, the increase in the export of bulk wine saw the overall average fall by one per cent to $2.65 per litre. (What does this all mean to the average wine drinker in Shanghai? I’ll get to that later. TWS)

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WineSleuth 5: Dodgy Traders

February 10, 2013
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Consumer protection rights are non-existent here in Shanghai. How does that affect us? These guys are not Del Boy and Rodney. The black market is inherently unstable. You might ask, “How can these flagship ‘western’ stores sell such clearly intended rip-off, con-wines with such casual disregard?”

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WineSleuth 6: China’s Rear Wine Label Law

February 14, 2012
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In China the rear labels on imported wine bottles have to be written in Mandarin, by law. I mention this, as recently, a couple of customers have shown their concern about seeing Chinese characters on the back of the bottles, believing horror of horrors they were being Shanghai’d with Chinese wine. They thought they had […]

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WineSleuth 7: More on (Moron?) Labelling:

March 17, 2012
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News of the inadvertently offensive brand name of a Chilean Wine highlights the need for caution when releasing labels in the Far East. Funny but a little bit rude…

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WineSleuth 8: Prices Outlook 2013

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We expect to see the general price stability of imported wine over the last 3 years will largely continue in 2013 with some variation according to price point. The major price hikes around 2009/2010, resultant from the global financial calamity, as importers protected themselves against currency fluctuations and uncertainty, and were followed by almost 2 years of high prices.

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WineSleuth 9: Counterfeiting Ring smashed: Shandong province

September 9, 2013
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Chinese police recently broke up the biggest wine counterfeiting ring in Shandong province, August 2013.

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