REPORT ON THE 2015 SHANGHAI CONVENTION
HOSTED BY THE SHANGHAILANDERS BEEFSTEAK AND BURGUNDY CLUB
Some 160 delegates from 47 clubs coming from all of the Australian States, New Zealand, Denmark, Japan, Singapore, Thailand and of course China, attended the three day Convention
The Convention followed the established format of functions on Friday and Saturday evenings and a Sunday lunch. The main events were spread across threeiconic Shanghai hotels.
The Registration, the AGM and Chinese Master Wine Class were held at the Radisson Blu, Plaza Xing Guo Hotel that was home to the Taipan of Swire in the 1930’s.
The opening welcome dinner was held at the Fairmont Peace Hotel located along the Bund.
This famous hotel has been refurbished in recent years and reflects the special elegance of Art Deco design and decoration. Delegates enjoyed aperitifs on the roof top, some eleven stories high, overlooking the lights of famousBund and the Huang Pu River.
The dinner was held in the ball room, a most elegant setting to welcome us to Shanghai. The excellent wines that accompanied the fine food included unfamiliar grape varieties like Aglianico from Italy which was much appreciated.
After the Business Session on Saturday, a Masterclass on Chinese wine was conducted by Fongyee Walker, a well-respected international wine educator and judge.
Delegates were taken through the climate, viticultural and production techniques in association with nine Chinese wines. Varieties tasted included some that were familiar and some that were not. Following the ninety minute presentation, Fongyee was thanked with a long standing ovation.
The Gala Dinner was held at the Intercontinental Shanghai Ruijin Hotel, the former home of Benjamin Morris, owner of the North China Daily Newspaper.
Delegates enjoyed an aperitif on the lawns and were welcomed with a Lion Dance. Again, accompanying the excellent food was a range of interesting wines from anywhere but Australia and New Zealand and included an enjoyable Marselan from China.
During the evening Convention Chair Howard Bennett was presented with Life Membership by the President of B&B
A relaxing Sunday commenced with an excursion to the historic Zhujiajiao water village. This was followed by an informal lunch at the Le Meriden She Shan overlooking the lake, a lovely way to finish a most enjoyable Convention.
Most delegates then set off to see different parts of China beyond Shanghai.
Our sincere thanks to the organizing committee of the Shanghailanders Club – Convention Chair Howard Bennett, Club President Hanns Michel, Treasurer Manoj Mehta and Winemaster Matthew Rouse. Congratulations for an excellent Convention.