CEOs raise a glass to top 10 wines in BT contest

CEOs raise a glass to top 10 wines in BT contest

A panel of chief executives, all wine connoisseurs, have picked the 10 winners of the inaugural Business Times Wine Challenge 2013.

The top 10 wines, or the CEOs' Choice, include two whites - Domaine Francois Carillon, Puligny Montrachet 2010 and the Pierro Chardonnay 2011.

The eight reds that made the final cut are: Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair, Vosne-Romanee aux Reas 2010; Bodegas Alion 2008; Huber Pinot Noir 2010; Sette Ponti Oreno 2009; Silverado Cabernet Sauvignon 2009; Domenico Clerico, Ciabot Menti Ginestra Barolo DOCG 2004; Chateau de la Font du Loup, Chateauneuf-du- Pape 2010; and Domaine Georges Vernay, Blonde du Seigneur 2009.

The judging panel was headed by international wine specialist Lim Hwee Peng and joined by Les Amis Group's director of wines Timothy Goh, and founder and sommelier Maximilien Fedkiw of Le Bistro du Sommelier, a restaurant in Armenian Street.

They did a preliminary judging and shortlisted 50 wines from the 150 submitted by 25 leading distributors in Singapore.

These were tasted and tested by 10 chief executive officers in a blind tasting session, where wines served had their labels covered.

The judges recorded scores based on aroma, complexity and balance, intensity and length of flavours in each wine.

The CEOs on the judging panel included Mr Edmund Koh, country head of UBS Singapore; Mr Patrick Daniel, editor-in-chief of the English and Malay Newspapers Division of Singapore Press Holdings; and Mr Neil Fiorentinos, managing director of BMW Asia.

Mr Koh said the challenge spoke volumes about the growth of wine appreciation in Singapore.

"Wine is now almost always part of the dining experience. More people in Singapore are increasingly discerning and educated about enjoying wine, be it pairing Chardonnay with chicken rice or Pinot Noir with Cantonese cuisine," said Mr Koh, 53.

The challenge was launched in June. The wines had to meet certain criteria, such as retailing above $50 and adhering to the Official Wine Class grouping of wines that are in their prime.

Judging took place at the dedicated wine tasting facility at Temasek Polytechnic.

Certified wine specialists were on hand throughout to pour and serve the wines correctly. They were presented blind and in flights, each grouped by grape variety, similar to the respected Australian Wine Show style.

Business Times editor Alvin Tay said while there have been many wine awards over the years, "none of them really reflects the palate of business leaders".

He added: "With the CEOs' Choice awards in the BT Wine Challenge, we hope we have been able to suss out what top executives would actually like to drink, rather than what might be technically impressive or a good investment."

All 50 winners that made the shortlist were featured in The Business Times as a run-up to the awards ceremony, and the list will be published as a guidebook soon.

Two wines from distributor J&D Burleigh made it to the top 10 - Domenico Clerico, Ciabot Menti Ginestra Barolo DOCG 2004 and Chateau de la Font du Loup, Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2010.

Its head of sales, Mr Quentin Chiarugi, said: "I think people need guidance when it comes to wine selection, not necessarily from experts but from professionals who enjoy their wines.

"CEOs are a perfect fit for this as they entertain a lot, they dine out and they can have a fair judgment about the quality of wine."

deepikas@sph.com.sg

Where to buy the winners

The top 10 winning wines of The Business Times Wine Challenge 2013 - CEOs' Choice are available with exclusive discounts for a limited period through the BTInvest website, www.BTInvest.com.sg

1. Domaine Francois Carillon, Puligny Montrachet 2010

Price: $88

Contact Corney and Barrow at 6809-3900 or kate.tan@corneyandbarrow.com

2. Pierro Chardonnay 2011

Price: $135

Bacchus, B1-13 Paragon Shopping Centre, 290 Orchard Road. Tel: 6734-4844

3. Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair, Vosne Romanee aux Reas 2010

Price: $117.70

Vinum Fine wines, Unit 10, Shaw Centre Level 2, 1 Scotts Road. Tel: 6735-3700

4. Bodegas Alion 2008

Price: $107

Vinum Fine Wines, Unit 10, Shaw Centre Level 2, 1 Scotts Road. Tel: 6735-3700

5. Huber Pinot Noir 2010

Price: $55

Basement 1 Isetan Scotts, Shaw House, 1 Scotts Road, Tel: 6733-1111

6. Sette Ponti Oreno 2009

Price: $116.63

Cornerstone Wines, 01-00 Cornerstone Building, 61 Lorong 17 Geylang.

Tel: 6732-0555

7. Silverado Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

Price: $88

1855 The Bottle Shop, 01-11 Tower 1, Republic Plaza,

9 Raffles Place. Tel: 6535-1855

8. Domenico Clerico, Ciabot Menti Ginestra Barolo DOCG 2004

Price: $181.90

J&D Burleigh, 3 Clementi Loop, Level 3. Tel: 6744-2765

9. Chateau de la Font du Loup, Chateauneuf-du-pape 2010

Price: $52.43

J&D Burleigh, 3 Clementi Loop, Level 3. Tel: 6744-2765

10. Domaine Georges Vernay, Blonde du Seigneur 2009

Price: $116, Ewineasia.com


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