Wines of the DayLast Saturday, 8 June 2019, I hosted dinner for two friends who were visiting Singapore. I have known Pascal Jolivet for some 30 years and who first visited Singapore around that time. Although he started in wine as a merchant, Pascal created his own brand and his Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume are in many of the top restaurants in Paris and the Cote d’Azur. He brought into this world something that did not existed before. What an achievement and legacy. Pascal Jolivet winery and vineyards are in Chavignol, the most hallowed ground of Sancerre. Lili Zhu is the daughter of CHEN Lizhong, proprietor of Tiansai Skyline of Gobi winery in Xinjiang. Visiting Singapore for the very first time, Lili had attended university in New York and also did postgraduate studies in wine in Bordeaux. Both Pascal and Lili brought a white wine each. The dinner was at Imperial Treasure Shanghai, Level 4, Takashimaya Shopping Centre, a Top 10 Restaurant of the Year in my other publication 100 Top Chinese Restaurants in the World 2019. Pascal – ever the gentleman and generous vigneron – asked to be photographed with Lili with each of them holding the other’s wine.
From left, Pascal Jolivet holding Tiansai Skyline of Gobi Chardonnay Selection 2016 and Lili Zhu with a bottle of Pascal Jolivet Sancerre La Cote 2015.
It is a wonderful example of people – and wine – from different cultures and civilizations coming together to foster friendship and understanding. The world is a better place when we reach out to each other. I hope you like the photograph. The wines were also absolutely delicious.
Pascal Jolivet La Cote Sancerre 2015
A touch reductive. So, we decanted the rest of the bottle which became considerably more expressive. Ripe, round yellow/golden citrus fruit with sunny minerality. The texture is creamy – the wine is unoaked – for a Sancerre and simply can’t-put-down.
Tiansai Skyline of Gobi Chardonnay Selection 2016
Bright straw in colour. Vanilla, flinty, ripe appley fruit with creamy texture and also freshness. I have always preferred Tiansai Selection to their higher – and pricier – Reserve Chardonnay. Medium-plus-ish bodied, the balance between fruit, structure, oak and freshness is so very well poised.