Published on March 26th, 2014 | by Le Gastronome Parisien1
Winebeast, a wine shop like no other
The Wine market is still growing in Hong Kong and events about wine as the Hong Kong Wine and Dine Festival are becoming increasingly popular. Hongkongers have become discerning consumers and connoisseurs of precious beverage that comes from France or elsewhere. I have often been amazed by the expertise of my friends in HK. They follow assiduously wine courses, participate in tastings and spend even diplomas. Their vision of wine was obviously skillfully directed by French distributors but this caricature tends to change as the supply diversified and refined palate.
The offer of wine distribution is bloated in the city. Wine is everywhere. As always, these growth markets attract many sizes but few swindlers and it is not easy to navigate. I confess to not being a consumer of wine in Hong Kong and unfamiliar with the market there. However, I’m asked to know where to find wine merchants trust and good advice. So I dug into the issue and discovered a whole new appointed WineBeast cellar seemed perfectly meet all these requirements !
Opened in October 2013, Winebeast moved on Johnston Road in Wan Chai. A wise choice because the area has long been one of the most westernized city and sees regularly land beautiful Food addresses. Include, Ham & Sherry Akrame and just opened a few tens of meters away or the Bo Innovation and Fook Lam Moon, the two essential starred restaurants in the area.
With its Chinese New Year clothes, the front of the Winebeast is elegant and modern. With its catchy name, Winebeast aims to attract young and initiated customers. However, traditional codes of wine is distilled in small well-chosen keys.
Total Winebeast offers 500 wines from mostly France, Spain, Germany and Italy. One of the great strengths of Winebeast is this section Causal Wines where the fine team of sommeliers led by the French Vincent Feron done a great job to select and promote the merits of atypical wines to Hong Kong as Beaujolais, Languedoc and Jura wines. Thus, we’ll not be surprised to find here and there a Morgon from Jean Foillard or powerful Côtes du Roussillon.
I am personally amazed by so much diversity. I never imagined falling for example yellow wine from Jura in Hong Kong and I’m really curious to know what Hong Kong can think of these very special wines. Nice surprise also on prices that are very soft and almost identical to those in France.
The side of Champagnes, WineBeast should naturally wear the big names in the sector which some customers can’t do without. But again, the cellar troublemaker breaks the rules and dares to export more humble but equally pleasurable as those from Jean Pierre Gravel or Moncuit Champagnes.
In the middle of the shop, Winebeast puts forward each month a different wine from French terroir. This month, a Champagne Cuvée Saint John André, displayed at a price of 429 HKD which outshines some Parisian wine shops…
My shop visit continues with the section on whether Grands Crus from Bordeaux and Burgundy. In elegant showcases softly lit, the best references align and leave notes with relish. Margaux Château Palmer 1996, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru Château Angelus 2009, Petrus Pomerol 2005 Bonnes Mares “Grand Cru”, 2010. Rich wine lovers will be perfectly satisfied with Winebeast.
With this specificity, Winebeast decided to invest the net by opening an online store and an original service Digital Sommelier ! The idea is simple but ingenious. To enjoy on the Internet the same advice given in shop. With a well thought form, the buyer sets his preferences, budget or the meal he has planned and is offered a series selected by the team of sommeliers. A great idea that can make the difference !
Read the complete post in french here.
G/F, 49 Johnston Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
MTR : Wan Chai
Tel. : +852 2804 1318
Open Monday to Friday from 11am to 8:30pm, Saturday from noon to 9pm and Sundays from 11am to 8pm.