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Friday, August 7, 2009

Thailand wine success from Australia

Nikki Lohitnavy is a woman aiming to make a mark in a traditionally male industry. But more important to her is the challenge of making fine wines in the tropical climate of Thailand.

pictured above - graduation Photos Adelaide South Australia

some text quote from Stephanie Foxley - Australian Network News

Ms Lohitnavy is a recent winemaking graduate of Australia's Adelaide University, and she has returned to her family's vineyard north of Bangkok to put her new skills to the test.

She told Radio Australia's Connect Asia: "I've pretty much grown up in the vineyard. My dad started this vineyard about 10 years ago, so I've grown up with it and I've always had an

TEL AVIV, ISRAEL - MARCH 19:  Cabernet Sauvign...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

interest in wine so I thought I should study it."The GranMonte vineyard is at Khao Yai, two hours from the capital.How do the grapes cope with the constant heat and humid climate?

CoolerMs Lohitnavy says: "It really depends where the vineyard is in Thailand. "Where we are, we have much less rain compared to other parts of the country. "It's much cooler and we have constant wind, so less humidity."Thai wines have picked up the title of "new latitude wines".GranMonte's production includes shiraz, cabernet sauvignon, chenin blanc and viognier.

First vintageThe 2009 vintage is the vineyard daughter's first.But it will take time to see

Wine grapes.Image via Wikipedia

GranMonte wines in western cellars - two years, the young winemaker hopes."We're only producing about 50,000 bottles a year and all of that is sold here in Thailand," she says. "So we don't have enough bottles."When our vines are producing at their full capacity, which will be 100 tonnes, or around 100,000 bottles, then we will start to export.

Niche"I think the vines will take a few more years to start producing at their maximum capacity."The wines will be competitive in somewhere like Australia as a niche offering, she believes."For people who are looking for something rare, something different. "Of course, the price is going to be a little bit higher than Australian wines that you find on the shelves, because, you know, we have to import everything that has to do with wine from overseas."Nothing is from Thailand, apart from the grapes of course. So we have very high costs, and tax as well." What is Nikki Lohitnavy's vision for the future?"I would love to see not only GranMonte wines, but Thai

Wine on the WallImage by chrisada via Flickr

wines, becoming well known in the international market."We've done so well already, since this is a very young industry for Thailand, just 15 or 20 years old. "So I really hope, working with other Thai wine makers, that we will promote Thai wines in the international market."

The winery present a very professional website with comprehensive viewing, we recommend you visit includes tour

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