The Business Times Wine Challenge 2013 - CEOs' Choice

SINGAPORE - The Business Times (BT), Singapore's leading financial daily, will be announcing the results of The Business Times Wine Challenge 2013 - CEOs' Choice at an awards ceremony at the UBS Business University Asia Pacific, Command House, on Friday, 27 September. This event is held in partnership with Swiss banking group UBS AG.

Starting in July, the first round of sampling saw 50 best wines shortlisted from 150 entries that were submitted by registered wine wholesale companies and merchants based in Singapore. The wines entered for evaluation had to come in standard-sized 750ml bottles and be commercially available in Singapore at hotels, restaurants, bars and specialist wine retail shops at a minimum of $50 (before GST).

The 50 best wines were shortlisted by a panel of experts comprising head judge and wine specialist Mr Lim Hwee Peng together with notable wine connoisseurs Mr Maximilien Fedkiw, founder and sommelier of Le Bistrot du Sommelier, and Mr Timothy Goh, Les Amis Group's director of wines. The shortlist covers both red and white wines from countries such as Australia, France, New Zealand, South Africa and the United States, among others.

Subsequently in August, the top ten wines were picked by a panel of CEOs who are all wine lovers in their own right. They are:

Mr Edmund Koh, Country Head of UBS Singapore and CEO, UBS Wealth Management, South East Asia & the Asia-Pacific Hub
Ms Susan Sim, Deputy CEO, ARA Trust Management (Suntec) Limited
Mr Neil Fiorentinos, Managing Director, BMW Asia Pte Ltd
Mr Esmond Choo, Senior Executive Director, UOB Kay Hian Private Limited
Mr Patrick Chong, CEO, The Luxasia Group
Mr Alfred S.H. Wong, Managing Director, Noel Gifts International Limited
Mr Wong Fong Fui, Chairman & Group CEO, Boustead Singapore Limited
Mr Mohd. K Rafin, Chief Corporate Officer, Park Hotel Group
Dr Alvin Hong, Neurosurgeon, Alvin Hong Neurosurgery
Mr Patrick Daniel, Editor-in-Chief, English and Malay Newspapers Division, Singapore Press Holdings

The trio of wine experts were on hand to take the CEOs through the judging, which was a blind tasting session where wines were served with their labels covered. The CEOs recorded their scores based on aroma, complexity and balance, intensity and length of flavours in each wine.

The top ten wines, or the CEOs' Choice, are:

Domaine Francois Carillon, Puligny Montrachet 2010, Corney & Barrow Ltd
Pierro Chardonnay 2011, Hai Choo Wines & Spirits
Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair, Vosne-Romanée aux Réas 2010, Vinum Fine Wines
Bodegas Alión 2008, Vinum Fine Wines
Huber Pinot Noir 2010, Wein & Vin Pte Ltd
Sette Ponti Oreno 2009, Hock Tong Bee Pte Ltd
Silverado Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, Vinicole Asia Pte Ltd
Domenico Clerico, Ciabot Menti Ginestra Barolo DOCG 2004, J&D Burleigh Pte Ltd
Chateau de la Font du Loup, Chateauneuf du Pape 2010, J&D Burleigh Pte Ltd
Domaine Georges Vernay, Blonde du Seigneur 2009,

Mr Edmund Koh, Country Head of UBS Singapore and CEO, UBS Wealth Management, South East Asia & the Asia-Pacific Hub, said: "UBS is delighted to partner The Business Times for its inaugural BT Wine Challenge 2013 CEOs' Choice. The BT Wine Challenge speaks volumes about the growth of wine appreciation in Singapore.

"Wine is now almost always part of the dining experience, whether for business or leisure. 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. I've always enjoyed bringing a bottle to share with like-minded company, and increasingly I do so with colleagues and business associates (who enjoy wine)," added Mr Koh.

Mr Alvin Tay, Editor of The Business Times, said: ""There have been many wine awards over the years but none of them really reflects the palate of business leaders. With the CEOs' Choice awards in the BT Wine Challenge, we hope we've 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 wines that made the shortlist were featured in The Business Times as a run-up to the awards ceremony, and the same list will be published as a guidebook on a later date.

Supporting The Business Times Wine Challenge 2013 - CEOs' Choice is Temasek Polytechnic which served as the Tasting Coordinator for the event.

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