Winemaking in Hong Kong

Winemaking in Hong Kong

Wine made in Hong Kong is more than just a novelty. The grapes are flown in but the rest of the winemaking magic happens right here in the 852

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The Flying Winemaker  The Flying Winemaker  on 23 Feb '16


The people of Hong Kong didn't get handed the greatest city in the world, they MADE it. It was a fishing village that used its harbour to bring the best of what the world had to offer to its doorstep. With this philosophy in mind, we source the best grapes from abroad to make seriously good wines: The Urban Project series.

Step 1: Our grapes are handpicked from vineyards around the world. So far, the fruits of our labour have been plucked from Entre-deux-Mers (France), Washington state (USA), and McLaren Vale (Australia).


The Urban Project - Step 1


Step 2: Next, the grapes are quickly frozen to keep their freshness and juicy goodness. This does not harm the fruit or affect the flavour in any way. In fact, freezing the grapes actually preserves their quality, especially during transport.


The Urban Project - Step 2


Step 3: Then, the grapes (not the wine) are flown into Hong Kong. While up in the air, the frozen grapes are kept in a temperature-controlled environment. This fruit is precious cargo!


The Urban Project - Step 3


Step 4: After landing in Chek Lap Kok (HKG), the grapes clear customs and get transported to an urban winery in Ap Lei Chau. What is an urban winery? Simply put, it's a winery located in a city rather than hectares of countryside.


The Urban Project - Step 4


Step 5: After drop off, the grapes are transferred into a sterile, standardised, temperature-controlled urban winery. Here, the grapes are defrosted and go through the stages of winemaking. This is when the magic happens: the grapes are fermented, blended, and transformed into wine.

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Step 6: Once we’re satisfied with the taste and the quality of the wine, our team - (you didn't think I did all of this alone did you?) - bottles and seal the wine with corks by hand.


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Step 7: To tell the four wines in the project apart, we slap a label on the bottle. The label tells you all you need to know about the wine: the varietal style (or blends), the country the grapes are from, the vintage, the percentage of alcohol, and so on. All the graphics are designed in-house too.


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Step 8: Time for the finishing touches: as a homage to traditional winemaking, all finished bottles of wine have a wax seal. Black wax for red wines, and an iridescent pearl wax for the white wine.


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Step 9: When the time is right, the wines get released commercially for all you great Hong Kong folk to share and drink. 


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We love Hong Kong, so we created these wines not only to show off Hong Kong's winemaking prowess, but also to preserve a little bit of history. Kai Tak, Rickshaw, Sampan, Old Peak Road - each bottle is named as a throwback to an iconic part of Hong Kong. 


For now, The Urban Project series has limited bottles of:

  • The Urban Project Sampan 2011 (Cabernet Franc / Merlot Blend, France)
  • The Urban Project Kai Tak 2011 (Merlot, France)
  • The Urban Project Rickshaw 2008 (Sauvignon Blanc / Chardonnay Blend, USA)
  • The Urban Project Old Peak Road 2010 (Grenache, Australia)


Where can you find out more about The Urban Project? Head to www.flyingwinemaker.asia.

Learn how to make more wines at www.TongueExplorers.com.



The Flying Winemaker

The Flying Winemaker

Eddie McDougall, The Flying Winemaker, is an award-winning wine judge, tv host, and HK winemaker

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