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4/06/2015

Inspired Tasting success in Japan

Wine Australia hosted its first Inspired Tasting in Tokyo on Monday, with more than 100 wines on show personally chosen by local Japanese A+ Australian wine specialists.

Providing education and training to the Japanese wine market, Wine Australia’s 37 Japanese-based wine specialists chose special wines with significant meanings for the event.  

More than 100 media and trade guests had the opportunity to taste 107 wines at the Inspired Tasting.

Hiro Tejima, Wine Australia regional manager, said he saw an overwhelming response from guests reflecting a wider interest in Australian fine wine.

“I’m confident that the Inspired Tasting has been another ‘best foot forward’ exercise that will help us capitalise on the growth of the Japanese economy and the opportunities available via the Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement (JAEPA),” Tejma said.

Opening up a range of Australian wines to the Japanese market, Makoto Inamasu, wine merchant and A+ trade specialist, said Shaw + Smith M3 Chardonnay struck a chord with him, while Fumiko Aoki, A+ honorary specialist and wine journalist, listed Seppeltsfield 100 Year Old Para Vintage Tawny as the most memorable Australian wine she’s tasted.

Tadayuki Yanagi, a local wine writer who attended the tasting, was surprised at the evolution of Australian wine.

“Australian wine now shows restraint and balance in extraction, alcohol, oak… everything,” Yanagi said. “Whites such as Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling and Semillon showed pure acidity, minerality and tightness – great with delicate Japanese cuisine.

“The whole-bunch-pressed Pinot Noir and elegant Shiraz impressed me and it was great to see classic styles remaining in the diverse offering of Australian wine.”

Aaron Brasher, Wine Australia regional director, said the event showcased the group’s passion for Australian wine.

“They’ll be taking our Australian wine message out to the broader trade and Japanese wine consumers with real determination and optimism,” Brasher said.

The event follows the recent release of export figures that show an increase in the value of Australian wine exports to Japan (up 7.8 per cent to $42.7 million) in the 12 months to March 2015. Wine exporters have also benefited from reductions in tariffs on bottled and bulk wine as part of JAEPA, which will see all tariffs on Australian wine eliminated over seven years.

 

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