Silver Heights Emma’s Reserve 1.5L
Price: RMB 3,800 (USD 589)
Emma’s Reserve is the private collection of winemaker Emma Gao, with only 2,000 bottles produced annually. This limited edition wine represents the top quality wine from Silver Heights in Ningxia and possibly China.
The wine is made of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon and 50% Merlot, which are grown organically and hand picked for harvest. It has been aged in French new oak barrels for 24 months before bottling.
Silver Heights is a family-run vineyard established by Gao Lin in 1999, then passed on to his daughter Gao Yuan (also known as Emma) who received her enology training at the Ecole d’Oenologie in Bordeaux. The relatively small-scale vineyard lies between the western part of Helan Mountain and the eastern part of Yellow River, with an altitude of from 1,100 to 1,300 meters above sea level.
Even without glossy packaging, an all-star team or enormous financial backing, the 2009 of Emma’s Reserve is rated 17 points out of 20 by wine writer and critic Jancis Robinson, till this day the highest rated Chinese wine by the critic.
Thanks to Ningxia’s low rainfall (less than 200 ml per year) and dry continental climate, many wineries today are converting to organic farming, and Silver Heights is going a step further by practicing biodynamic viticulture starting from 2017.
Hoping to preserve the ecological balance of the virgin land in Helen Mountain, Emma has adopted biodynamic farming in the vineyard including practices such as spraying herbal tea on vines to retain acidity and using compost to improve soil health.