A few years back China became Bordeaux’s biggest export market. Over a few years the Chinese market grew from almost nothing to become the market that Bordeaux could not live without. How this happened is the subject of a new book, Thirsty Dragon, China’s Lust for Bordeaux and the Threat to the World’s Best Wines, by Suzanne Mustacich.
The subtitle is slightly polemic, there is not really any threat to Bordeaux wines and they are not necessarily the world’s best… (Which could ever claim to be?) But the story that the book tells is fascinating. It covers every aspect of the triangular drama of Bordeaux-Wine-China, from the pull of super-luxury wines that started in the early 90s, over China’s investments in over 100 Bordeaux chateaux and the growth of a local wine production in China, to how the boom bubble what perhaps been burst by the Chinese governement’s recent crackdown on corruption and government over-spending.
Per does an in-depth review in his latest article on Forbes, A Love-Hate Story of Bordeaux and China, Book Review of Thirsty Dragon.
Here’s the introduction:
Don’t be mistaken. This is not a wine book. This is a book about the business of Bordeaux. About business in China. About Chinese doing business in Bordeaux. And everything in between.
The recently published book Thirsty Dragon by Suzanne Mustacich is one of a rare breed of “wine” books. It is more written like a novel than a non-fiction wine book. It is about the love and hate story between Bordeaux and China. I know of few other books like this in the wine world. Thoroughly researched fact books on wine that reads like a novel. The ones that exist are almost all written by Americans, published in the US. The Billionaires Vinegar by Benjamin Wallace. The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy. Perhaps a few more. (Any suggestions?)
Thirsty Dragon tells the story of how and why China became the most important export market for Bordeaux wine. And why that may well change one day. It tells the story through the eyes of, or more correctly, through the stories told by all the people who have been involved in developing this wine business relationship since the early 1980s.
Read Per’s full book review on Forbes: A Love-Hate Story of Bordeaux and China, Book Review of Thirsty Dragon.
Comment: We were honoured and flattered that BKWine Magazine was mentioned as one of the sources in the long list of foot notes and references.
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