Wine is in his veins

PHOTO: The New Paper

Mr Marcus Lai, 31, is a budding wine connoisseur.

His love for a good glass of Shiraz has turned him into a collector, with more than 150 bottles worth about $20,000.

He visits his storage unit weekly to check that his wine is still in good condition and to select a bottle of Italian wine for a gathering with friends during the weekend.

Mr Lai says: "I prefer the taste of old world wines (which refers primarily to wines made in Europe, with long histories), but it is all about drinking with good company, where wine is the medium that brings all of us together."

He says that wine collecting can be for both pleasure and business as well.

He is the managing director of Winefield's Auctioneers Asia, a company specialising in appraising the value of wine and selling them through auctions.


Mr Lai, who spent about six years amassing his collection, says the least expensive wine he stores is a Chablis white wine from Burgundy which costs about $30.

The most expensive wine is the Chateau Haut Brion from Bordeaux, which cost about $700.

Although he started working as a dietitian in 2008 after graduating from Curtin University Australia, he quit to pursue his passion.

His love took him to France, where he visited about seven winery organisations in 2012.

Mr Lai says: "I loved my job as a dietitian, but I felt like it was time to do something I'm more passionate about."

He ensures that the storage unit is always set between 12 deg C and 17 deg C and that the humidity level is appropriate so that none of his and his companies' wines turns bad due to the imbalance of properties.

He also stores the wines sideways so that the wine can keep the cork moist and ensure that it does not dry out.

This article was first published on October 04, 2015.
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