Experience Mexico’s Impressive Wine and Tequila

One&Only Palmilla

Award-Winning Resort Boasts New Educational Programme and Largest Mexican Wine and Tequila Collection in Mexico
Delight in the impressive new wine and tequila offerings at One&Only Palmilla, featuring the largest Mexican wine collection in the country with over 200 labels from emerging territories and regions. In addition to wine, the resort offers more than 53 exclusive labels of tequila by the glass with private or group tasting sessions and food pairings offered by Wine Director Manuel Arteaga at the resort’s signature open-air restaurant Agua.
“We are very excited and proud to introduce our guests to the many wines and tequilas of Mexico,” says Arteaga, Wine Director. “By educating our guests on the older vintages and newer wineries in emerging regions such as Baja, we have succeeded in both raising the profile of Mexican wine while at the same time providing an authentic and unforgettable culinary experience.”
The Wine List
The One&Only Palmilla wine experience serves as an exceptional introduction to the region’s vineyards and cuisine. When creating the wine list, Arteaga focused on regional styles and varietals that complement the culinary offering of the resort versus brand names. Through the 220 label collection visitors can learn about new, up-and-coming Mexican boutique wines as well as savour prestigious older vintages. In addition to Mexican wines of every possible variety and style, the list also boasts 1,500 international trendsetters and all time classics from France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, USA, Chile, Argentina, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. There are wines in every price segment, for every budget.  Local Mexican vineyards in the property’s selection include: Sinergi, Villa Montefiori and Paralelo.
The Tequila Tasting

With the Tequila Tasting experience, One&Only Palmilla introduces guests to the world of fine tequilas. Each tasting, curated by Arteaga, starts with a brief description of the tequila production process, regions and categories from White and Reposado to Anejo and Extra anejo. The description is then followed by a guided tasting of seven high quality tequilas beginning with non-aged White Tequila to Extra Anejo which is aged a minimum of 3 years. Hosted at Agua, the flights are customised based on the clients’ preferences and tastes.
Dinners, Tastings and Events
Hosted by Arteaga and his team of wine waiters, Mexican wine tastings are priced at US$75/person at Market and US$55/person at Agua and are paired with a five course tasting menu. Tastings are hosted at Agua, an open-air, palapa-style restaurant serving a richly flavorful hybrid of Mediterranean fare with native Mexican influences dubbed “Mexiterranean,” by Executive Chef Larbi Dahrouch or at the new Market by Michelin-Starred chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. For a private tasting, One&Only Palmilla can organise a Dinner Under the Stars experience. Priced at US$695 for two people, guests are treated to a private dinner for two in the Cove, a secluded area of the resort. The meal comes  complete with private butler, wine sommelier and chef to prepare guests a custom menu with signature items that can include: Grilled Peppers Salad, Panela Cheese, Mole Negro; Roasted Parrot Fish, Bouillabaisse Emulsion, Cherry Tomato Niçoise; and Roasted Pork Chop, Chipotle Reduction, Black Beans, Sweet Potato and Banana.

SML The Press Room Group’s restaurant

For those of you who didn’t know what SML mean, yes you got it right! – Small, Medium and Large, is a fancy restaurant by the Press Room Group. Located in the restaurant hot spot zone of Times Square, Causeway Bay, This establishment is an experimental dining operation that is governed by size.

The concept of SML is basically to offer what they call a ‘democratic dining experience’. You can simply choose to feast yourselves with a full dinner, sharing many dishes or just a dish just for yourself. I personally quite like the concept as it does break away from the conventional starter-main-dessert format and introduce a brand new dining experience that is both dynamic and choice-driven.

The restaurant gives you a feeling of ambience Mediterranean /Mexican, original as well as refreshing at the same time. There is the 8-feet tall ‘SML Baby’ created by Michael Lau standing right at the entrance. You just can’t miss it! The interior, designed by Alexi Robinson, gives a refreshingly neutral feel to the space in terms of colors and textures and in the use of hand-crafted materials. What surprised me is the huge patio area, a really rare feature for a restaurant in this building!

SML’s menu covers a broad range of Mediterranean style of cuisine with everything from meat, seafood, pastas, risottos, salads, soups and more, and they’re all with a simple concept of size-oriented (Small – tapas size, Medium – for one or to mix & match with friends, Large – for sharing). One of the waiters claimed that the Pasta is one of their ‘signature’ dishes, which I found it to be very delicious. I was amazed that the open kitchen did a pretty good job of churning all the dishes out quite quickly which means your orders are oven hot.. It’s a trademark of theirs and SML strives to fulfill various appetites and needs from this something-for-everyone menu.

Let’s cool off the hot heat with at times the spicy dishes and indulge in your sweet tooth with some lovely desserts. The Tiramisu and The Caramel Profiteroles with Butterscotch Sauce were just simply irresistible for those days when you must get your sugar fix!

Their wine selection is extensive. You can even try out the self service Enomatic Wine Dispenser that offers a range of wines by the taste, half or full glass. Additional to wines there is a range of cocktails and mock-tails for your selections. No doubt it is the food and restaurant concept that stands out in the Times Square dining venue. The pricing is mid-range and considerately great value. SML is by far the most ambitious eatery in the building with something-for-everyone menu.

11/F, Times Square, Food Forum
1 Matheson Street, Causeway Bay
Hong Kong
T: +852 2577 3444

By Ling Gi

Hit the Deck in Style with the Chandon Chill Out Box

This summer, Chandon proudly presents their new Chill Out Box – the perfect drinks cooler to take with you on your next BBQ or picnic. Featuring a tech savvy, modern and sleek design, the Chandon Chill Out Box is a must have at any outdoor excursion!

The Chandon Chill Out Box is Chandon’s world-first portable drinks cooler that is custom designed to hold up to four sparkling wine bottles while featuring a fully integrated removable iPod docking unit with two stereo powered speakers. The final product has a quality gloss white finish and is equipped with over-the-shoulder carry strap for comfort.

With the purchase of the Chandon Chill Out Box, you will also receive 6 bottles of Chandon Brut NV and 6 bottles of Chandon NV Rosé. The Chandon Brut is a fresh, elegant and approachable style wine with delicate characters that are sure to please the palette, while the Chandon NV Rosé extrudes the vivacious spirit of a pink tinted sparkly, exciting the senses with its vibrancy and charm. Both deliver an exceptional taste that is suitable for all occasions, representing the perfect complement to the Chandon Chill Out Box. Be it an outdoors picnic or just a relaxing day by the pool, keep it cool with a glass of bubbly Chandon while unwinding to your favorite tunes from the Chandon Chill Out Box.

Price: $2,320
(Chandon Chill Out Box plus 6 bottles of Chandon Brut NV and 6 bottles of Chandon NV Rosé)

For customer enquiry, please contact Moët Hennessy Diageo Hong Kong Ltd. at 2976 1111.

The Glenlivet Distillery

The Prince Charles Officiate The Glenlivet Distillery Opening of £10 Expansion in Scotland
Marks Quest to Become World’s No.1 Single Malt

His Royal Highnesses The Prince Charles, (or The Duke of Rothesay as he is known in Scotland) and over 250 members of the community were present last week to open a new expansion to The Glenlivet Distillery in Speyside, Scotland, the home of The Glenlivet, the single malt that started it all.

Completed earlier this year, the new facility will be home to a new mash tun, eight traditional Oregon pine washbacks, and six expertly crafted copper stills, delivering a 75% increase in production capacity to satisfy future global demand in the buoyant market for single malt Scotch whisky.  At a total cost of £10 million, the expansion will support The Glenlivet’s long-term ambition to become the World’s No 1 single malt.
Christian Porta, Chivas Brothers Chairman and CEO, emphasised the significance of this investment to the future success of The Glenlivet: “Today’s opening represents the latest milestone in a period of sustained investment and strong growth in The Glenlivet. Since 2002, we have taken the brand from No 3 to No 2 globally. We are already leading from the front in the US, the world’s most valuable Scotch whisky market and No1 single malt market, and we are now well-positioned to replicate this success internationally.”

Benefits for the community of The Glenlivet
The investment has already brought real benefits to the local business community with a team of local contractors involved in the building of the new facilities. The construction of the expansion was the first major responsibility of newly appointed Master Distiller Alan Winchester, a lifelong resident of Speyside and a leader in the industry for 34 years.

Winchester commented: “The opening was a momentous occasion in the long and proud history of The Glenlivet Distillery. It was a privilege to be involved with the new building and we are honoured to have such distinguished company to mark the occasion.”
Architects LDN of Forres were responsible for overall design, while A.D. Walker of Banff acted as principal contractor. Subcontractors included: Simmers of Keith, which built the steel structure; specialist vat builder Joseph Brown of Dufftown, who installed 8 new traditional wooden washbacks; and coppersmiths Forsyths of Rothes, which built 6 new stills in an exact replica of the distillery’s famous tall, wide still shape.

A destination for whisky connoisseurs
Already the destination of over 45,000 visitors per year, The Glenlivet Distillery in Speyside, Scotland now gives each and every one of them the opportunity to become a brand ambassador – a whisky connoisseur who can share the heritage and history of The Glenlivet with other single malt-lovers around the world. Visitors can even choose between three modern-day ‘smugglers’ trails’, which follow the path of 19th-century bootleggers who brought the taste of The Glenlivet to aristocracy and royalty at a time when it was still an illegal art.

Of all of The Glenlivet’s distilleries around the globe, the location in Speyside, Scotland remains the heart of the operation, as it is a landmark that embodies the foundation of The Glenlivet, the legal battles over its product and its name, and the legend of the first brand of Scotch whisky inspired by Scotland’s foremost whisky region.


Osawa Wines

Osawa Wines offers a select range of premium quality exclusively from grapes grown at their Maraekakaho vineyard. Along with a unique micro-climate influenced by the nearby Kaweka Ranges, soils in this region are renowned for their diversity. Osawa Wines have taken full advantage of this to select the most ideally suited individual parcels of land from within their own vineyard for each varietal: chardonnay, sauvignon blanc and pinot noir.

Osawa Wines is the vision of Japanese wine lover and traveller, Taizo Osawa, who fell under New Zealand’s spell some years ago and decided to live his dream by planting vines in this idyllic rural setting. Groundwork began in 2005, vines were planted a year later and the vineyard celebrated its first harvest in 2008. Along with neighbouring Maraekakaho wineries, Osawa has been part of the transformation of this former sheep farming area.

The Wines


Stonefruit and lime aromas lead into a palate that is balanced and elegant and fruit driven. This wine shows the benefit of an extended time on lees and is complex with nougat and mineral notes. The finish is long and bal-anced by a lively natural acidity.
Grapes were carefully hand harvested, whole bunch pressed, cold settled in tank then placed in oak for fermen-tation. Exhibiting the fruit intensity and flavours we like in Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay. After fermentation, the wine remained on yeast lees and was stirred for 4 weeks to build mouth feel and texture. It was then racked, gently fined, filtered and immediately bottled.


Ginger and pear aromas delight with their intensity and purity. A seamless, palate unfolds, showcasing richly textured, refreshing pear flavours, a rounded finish with a hint of minerality.
Harvest Date: 18 March 2009
Residual Sugar: Dry
Grapes were carefully harvested from Osawa’s estate vineyard,and soaked in a bin for a few hours before a long slow pressing programme. The wine was cool fermented in stainless steel tanks to emphasise its fruit char-acters. The wine was then given extended lees contact to increase complexity on the palate.
     ROSÉ 2009
Vibrant watermelon pink in colour, this Sangiovese Rosé displays aromas of ripe strawberries and cherries. The palate is fresh and fruity with excellent purity of flavour. The palate finishes with a touch of sweetness.
Harvest Date: 18 March 2009
Residual Sugar: Dry
Hand harvested 100% Sangiovese grapes were must pumped into the press and left to soak overnight on skins. Following gentle pressing the juice was settled and fined prior to racking and fermentation in tank. The fermenta-tion was kept cool to preserve freshness and aromatics. The wine was lightly fined and filtered before bottling.

For more information, please visit http://www.osawawines.co.nz

Solar De Urbezo Bodegas

History and tradition

Santiago Gracia taking on the tradition of his grandparents founded the winery Solar de Urbezo with the desire to plant and grow grapes from the vineyards Gracia-Campillo family owns in Cariñena.

In 1995, Santiago Gracia Ysiegas took up the tradition of his family and founded the winery Bodegas Solar de Urbezo. His vocation was to elaborate grapes from the vineyards of the Gracia-Campillo family, offering total guarantee of purity and quality in their wines. The winery is located in Carinena, region of Aragon, 45 km from Zaragoza.

The culture of wine growing in Carinena is one of the most ancient in Spain; it goes back to the 3rd century, when the Romans inhabited this land. The cultivation of grapes was maintained throughout time and still constitutes an essential part in the way of life, economy and historical heritage of the area.

The Wines


WINE: Red. Nine months ageing in French, American and Russian oak barrels.?PLOT: "Virgen de Lagunas", "Zafranar" and "Pardina"?VARIETIES: 40% Tempranillo, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 10% Syrah.
Date harvested: September 2005
Bottled: April 2007
Process: Individual alcoholic fermentation for each variety. After the malolactic fermentation, wine tasting to determinate the coupage. Ageing in French, American and Russian oak for 9 months and completion in bottle until its commercialization.
Tasting note: Bigarreau cherry red colour. Complexity of aromas of ripe fruit with subtle notes of toasted oak, toffee, vanilla and balsam. Well structured, broad and harmonic in the mouth. Elegant bouquet.
Serving suggestions: Smoked fish, roasts, foie gras, red meat and cheese.?Serve at 16º-18ºC

WINE: Young white
PLOT: "Virgen de Lagunas"
VARIETIES: 100% Chardonnay
Date harvested: September, 2009
Process: Skin Cold maceration. Alcohol fermentation made at low temperature to preserve the aromas. Lees stirring, "battonage"
Bottled: December 2009
Tasting: Pale yellow colour with green tones. Lovely varietal aromas of white flowers, tropical fruits and pineapple. The palate is mellow and crisp with flavours of pear and apple. Nice entry into the mouth with an elegant structure and a distinctive finish.
Serving suggestions: Fish, seafood, cheeses, foie gras and white meat. It pairs nicely with sea bass, oysters, lobster and smoked cod carpaccio.
Serve at 8º to 10º C.

WINE: Red. Twelve months ageing in French, American and Russian oak barrels.?PLOT: "Valfrasno" and "Virgen de Lagunas"?VARIETIES: 40% Garnacha, 30% Cariñena, 20% Syrah and 10% Cabernet-Sauvignon.
Process: Separate alcoholic fermentation for each varietal. Macerations that go from 12 to 20 days at temperatures from 14º to 28ºC. Once the blend is defined, the malolactic activity takes place in the oak barrels, It is followed by 12 months of aging in French, American and Russian oak barrels. The Urbezo Seleccion 2002 bottles have remained and matured in our cave until the optimum balance and bouquet has been reached.?Limited production of 5.978 bottles.
Tasting note: Ripe cherry colour. Complex and intense nose of ripe fruit aromas along with a hint of eucalyptus and spices. Notes of toasted oak, vanilla, cacao and dried fruits (figs and prunes). Medium-full body, bold and harmonic. Good structure and vivacity, balanced tannins. Pleasant finish. Long and nice aftertaste.
Serving suggestions: smoked Fish, duck, foie gras, red meat and cheeses.?Serve at 18ºC.

For more information, please visit:  http://www.solardeurbezo.es


The owner of Robert Eymael

History of the Wine Estate Mönchhof

The Mönchhof, formerly in the possession of the Cisterian abbey Himmerod, is one of the oldest Wine 'Estates at the Mosel.

Pope Alexander III already confirmed the first Wine Estate possession of the abbey in the year 1177 in Uerzig. The monks of Himmerod built the wine-cellar at that time and in 1509 the estate you can admire today.

In 1804, after the secularization by Napoleon, our family could acquire the Wine Estate in Paris. The wines of our Mönchhof attained very early a great name. In 1717 the archbishop classified our Wine Estate and his special site in the first category. At the world exhibition  1893 in Chicago the quality of the Mönchhof wines were awarded with the highest prices.

In one of our Erdener Wine Estates one of the oldest Roman wine press in the north from the alpes was discovered. According to estimations of  archaeologists it originates from the centre of  the second century. This 14 times 10 meters large wine press lies in the midst of the well-known Wine Estate Erdener Treppchen. The size of the buildings demonstrates Impressively the meaning of the viticulutre in Erden and Ürzig before approximately two thousand years.

You can connect a journey to the Moenchhof in Uerzig with a stay of several days in Wine Estate to enjoy their wines.  In the elegantly arranged areas and guest rooms you will have the very special ambience of the Moenchhof.

For more information, please visit on http://www.moenchhof.de

Kessler Zink

Historically certified:
Quality from Rheinhessen

Early in 1955 a private winery was founded on historic ground: the Dohlmühle estate is mentioned in documents since 1390. Once it has been an ancient mill – today the business is to deal with more delicious liquids that spring water. Buildings and properties have changed their purpose and are part of the winery and vineyards now.

Since 1990 the Stütz family is owner of the Dohlmühle estate. The family does not only produce their own fine wines on acreage of 35 hectare, they also operate modern wine cellars and a bottling plant. In their work they combine approved old fashioned methods with innovative techniques of wine-making – thus the family has good reason to take an optimistic look into the future.

The wine:
Kessler Zink Pinot Noir

2006     Pinot Noir Redwine – Semidry, QbA, quality wine red

A full-bodied, red wine with an intensive taste and the complex character of fruity and aromatic German red wines.
Grape variety: Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir)

This red wine has an intensive smell and taste of dark fruits, blueberries, and black currants. The sweetness is well balanced and indulge the tannins of the Pinot Noir grapes. A very nice red wine for red wine-lovers who enjoy also a little bit of sweetness.

Serve with a temperature of 18°C, with roasted spicy food like lamb-chucks or grilled beef.

For more information, please visit: http://www.kessler-zink.de


Located in prime city real estate is the stunning SEVVA a top Prince’s Building Central Hong Kong.  This place turn heads all the way around. It has one of the best if not the best sky terrace to have drinks and take in the breath-taking skyline of Hong Kong.

No doubt it is one of the grooviest address to hang out and a sublime place to have dinner. Remember those days when you turn up to a restaurant and your table is not ready, they get you to sit by the bar and wait. “This aint NO bar at that restaurant”. You feel the vibe as soon as you walk in. There are four areas to this magnificent establishment.  An A La Carte on the one end, casual dining on the other,  a chill out area inside the restaurant  for drinks which leads out to this colossus amazing sky terrace. With Djs spinning up the tunes twenty five floors up, it’s kinda surreal as most fun are usually on ground level.

What i enjoy about SEVVA is that it has an awesome atmosphere.  “A buddy of mine told me It is pretentious”. For me it was packed with professionals whom dress well, like to impress and loves this sort of lifestyle entertainment. It is so appealing to have another form and level of entertainment in H.K.

After some wine, conversation and a little dance , it was time to hop back in for our dinner. The service here is excellent and I guess it comes together with the whole package. For starters, I had the SEVVA Special Salad which consists of Organic Mecslun Greens, Artichoke Hearts, Avacado, Endive, Tea-Smoked Quail Eggs & Salt n Pepper Tofu and the Demitasse of Chicken Soup for the Soul. It comes in a little cute cup. Salads are of perfect portion, just enough so you could still pile in your mains & deserts. For main, my Pasta Named Desire with King Prawn & Crab Roe Spaghetti with Champagne Crème Sauce was simply sumptuous. For deserts go for the sorbet and the little orange cake, its simply irresistible.

A dinner for two at SEVVA could cost you HK$ two grand but hey why not if you got the dosh. It is a fantastic place to impress your dates and SEVVA is a kind of restaurant where proposals have been proposed.

If you are just looking for a groovy place to have drinks this summer, style guru Bonnie Gokson is serving a host of new summer cocktails just in time for the arrival of ‘Sex and the City 2’ .
The new range of flavours have been created by Ms Gokson and New Yorker Joseph Boroski, a renowned ‘mixologist’ who blended exotic drinks on the actual TV series of ‘Sex and the City’.

Starting at HK$135 per glass or HK$520 for a pitcher (serves 4 people), the summer cocktails include refreshingly unique blends of fresh fruit and their nectars with organic mint, wholesome raw sugarcane and dashes of wines or spirits.
The Concubine, living up to its name as gentle and fragrant with a touch of the exotic East, blends a hint of vodka with tea olive blossom syrup, crushed lychees, muscato grapes and lemon juice, shaken in ice. Drizzled with Cabernet Sauvignon, Pineapple & Vanilla Batida is muddled pineapple and its juice with a hint of gula melaka and Tahitian vanilla essence, served on rock ice.
Guava Mojito mixes white rum, guava, sugarcane, lime, mint and a dash of soda on rock ice. Strawberries & Champagne Mojito charges the classic rum cocktail with crushed strawberries & lime, creme de raspberry and icy cold champagne.
The special sangria blend in the original SEVVA ‘Sex in the City’ cocktail includes rosé wine adorned with a slice of lemon, twist of orange peel and strawberry adding a decadent edge to SEVVA’s unique recipe of fun, fashion and friends. It’s the ideal drink to be enjoyed on the terrace with views over sparkling Central on hot summer nights. 

I adore SEVVA. There are many rooftop, terrace and dining establishments with this style of concept but i have not been to one which blends so nicely together.

AS Bonnie Gokson describes as ‘the DNA’ of Hong Kong – traditional regional Asian cuisines intermixed with Western fine dining, coupled with her own travels and experiences. She says: “This is my contribution and passion to the city that I love.”

Prince's Building 25th Floor, 10 Chater Road, Central, Hong Kong

T +852 2537 1388

By Andrew Kim

Cafe Kool – Kowloon Shangri-la

Too Kool for Kowloon

Who said hotel dining couldn’t be fun? Any restaurant that can boast six kitchens, a plethora of chefs running around to do your bidding and a metre-tall fountain pumping out real liquid chocolate has got to be worth checking out, even if it is hedonistic. Am I right?

Another great gimmick at Café Kool are the plasma TV screens in the two private dining rooms. You can actually change the channel to view the kitchen staff prepare your meal! But like I said it’s a gimmick, and if you really want to know how your food is being cooked, all you have to do is present your plate to a member of their staff  whom all wear Adidas sports shoes and they’ll whip a pasta dish, a selection of sushi or an Indian delicacy!

So, anyway, if you’re familiar with Kool’s equally cool sister Café TOO, you’ll know it’s no ordinary buffet. OK, so you get your usual salad counter and seafood station, but you also get some pretty special stuff over at the Asian and Western kitchen not to mention Déli Kool if you want take out. Prawns are taken fresh from bubble tanks, Indian breads arrive from huge copper tandoors, and a one-and-a half-metre tall clay pot produces some magnificent traditional Chinese tonic soups. Basically, if you have ever read a review about a buffet before and they tell you ‘there’s something for everyone’, don’t believe it until you try Kool.

Elsewhere in the hotel, Japanese outlet Nadaman is quite frankly it’s stunning. If you can get a group together, either friends or preferably colleagues (that way the boss pays), book out one of the private rooms – you are in for a treat!

Café Kool
Mezzanine Level, Kowloon Shangri-La
64 Mody Road,
Tsim Sha Tsui East, Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2733 8753
Website: www.shangri-la.com

Written by AK