银色高地,来自中国宁夏的家族酒庄 Silver Heights, a family winery from Ningxia, China

晴格格 & Isabell

眼睛累了不想看屏幕?在路上不方便阅读?您可以来听作者们为您朗读的这个博客喔!Don’t feel like reading? You don’t have to! Tune in to listen to our authors read you this blog.

中文原声 – Chinese by 晴格格

英文原声 – English by Isabell


银色高地葡萄园员工的开心笑脸 / Sliver Heights staff – a happy face in the vineyard

2010/11学年,那一年,我在银川。一年的求学生活加上2个月的全聚德餐厅打工生涯、不长不短,让我对银川这座城市产生了格外的情愫。也正是在这里、预科结业的我顺利地以第一名的成绩、选中了心仪的葡萄酒专业。在欧洲求学工作的近几年来,这里无疑成为了最受瞩目的优质国产葡萄酒产区。蓦然间发觉:原来一切都命中注定、葡萄酒将与我的职业生涯形影相随、密不可分。

In the academic year 2010/11, I was in Yinchuan. One year of study along with two months’ of work experience in a restaurant – it flew by, and I was left with a special sentimental feeling for Yinchuan city. It was here that I graduated from preparatory school ranking 1st in the class, going onto successfully being selected for my dream major – Enology; the wine industry has been booming here in recent years and this place has become the most famous high-quality domestic wine producing area in China. So it was fate, I realised that my life was destined for the wine industry.

银色高地酒庄主建筑 / The Silver Heights Main Building

私营家族酒庄的模式在欧洲十分常见。然而,对于腾飞中的中国而言,国有企业依然统战着大面江山。真正的家族酒庄更是屈指可数的。而今天我们就将目光聚焦到贺兰山麓的银色高地,一个在中国为数不多、地地道道的家族酒庄。这里、承载着两代人的艰苦耕耘。银川,是宁夏回族自治区的首府。这里干燥少雨、然而黄河水能够提供充裕的灌溉资源。正如常言道:“天下黄河富宁夏”。宁夏地势南高北低,一般海拔为1100米至2000米,最高海拔为3556米。银色高地所处小产区为贺兰产区。贺兰产区位于贺兰山苏峪口北侧,为贺兰山洪积扇地貌。土壤类型为重砾石及沙石土壤,越靠近山脚,砾石越大,越多。

The private family winery model is very common in Europe, however, for developing China, state-owned enterprises are still playing a major role in the marketplace. There are only a handful of real family wineries in China, and today, we will focus on Silver Heights at the foot of Helan Mountain, where one can find a few of these genuine “family” wineries, where two generations of hard work continues to this day. Yinchuan is the capital of Ningxia Hui’s Autonomous Region. Ningxia has  high terrain in the south and a low terrain to the north, with an altitude from 1100 to 2000 meters, to a maximum of 3556 meters. The climate is dry, an ideal combination for vine growing, and people say that: “Yellow River makes Ningxia rich and fertile”, this is said because there is plenty of Yellow River water for irrigation. Silver Heights is located in the Helan Region. This region is located in the north of Helan Mountain – Suyukou with alluvial landforms, the soil types include heavy gravel and sandy soil. The closer the soil is to Helan Mountain, the larger and more prevalent the amount of gravel.

银色高地葡萄园的砾石和葡萄 / Silver Heights’s gravel and grapes in the Vineyard

1999年,银色高地的创始人、高林有一种预感:有一天,他的家宁夏省会变成广受欢迎的世界一流的葡萄酒产地。他开始种植来自法国的赤霞珠,并说服了女儿高源(也被称为Emma)到波尔多留学参加葡萄酒酿造硕士项目。高源开玩笑的说当时22岁的她听说是法国、想都没想就答应了下来。高源成功获得法国国家酿酒师证书。深受法国影响的高源坚持法国传统的酿造技术,因此酒庄的葡萄酒偏向旧世界风格。回国后,高源曾在桃乐丝担任培训讲师。她通过从事市场工作来了解葡萄酒市场、然而她没有放弃酿酒。工作之初,便和桃乐丝谈好每年请假三个月回宁夏做酒。2011年,香格里拉、凯宾斯基、万豪等五星级酒店以招标方式让桃乐丝推荐十款优秀的葡萄酒,高源抓住了这次难得的机会,向领导毛遂自荐自家两款酒。结果这两款酒脱颖而出,帮助银色高地打入了高端市场。桃乐丝几番考察后,最终鼓励高源全职酿酒,并承诺负责销售。

In 1999, Gao Lin, founder of Silver Heights had a premonition that one day his home in Ningxia would become a popular world-class wine producing area.  He began to grow Cabernet Sauvignon imported from France and persuaded his daughter Gao Yuan (also known as Emma) to study towards a master’s degree in wine making in Bordeaux, France. Emma jokes that when she was 22 years old and she heard her father say he wanted her to go and study in France,  she jumped at the idea, agreeing immediately, without thought. Emma went onto successfully obtaining the French National Winemaker Certificate. Deeply influenced by France, Emma insists on the traditional French winemaking technology, so the winery’s wines tend to be created in the old world style. After returning home, Emma took on the position of training lecturer in Torres China. She learned about the wine market by working in the market, but she never gave up enology. At the beginning of her career, she arranged an agreement with Torres to take three months off each year to return to Ningxia for the harvest. In 2011, as it happened, five-star hotels such as Shangri-La, Kempinski and Marriott invited Torres to recommend 10 excellent wines through a bidding process. Emma seized this rare opportunity and submitted two of her wines for the bidding. In the end, the two wines stood out and helped the Silver Heights enter into the high-end wine market. Noticing Emma’s talent for winemaking, Torres encouraged her to be a full-time winemaker and promised to take responsibility for the sales of Sliver Heights. 

高源和父亲共度中秋节 / Emma Gao and her father Lin Gao celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival together

银色高地的背后还有着一个美丽的爱情故事。高源在著名的凯隆世家(Calon Ségur)实习时,认识了出生于酿酒世家的法国酿酒师Thierry Courtade。Courtade坦承自己从第一次见面就被高源的美丽深深打动,热情地带着她去探访各个名庄和他的家乡,高源则请他吃中国菜、感受中国文化。2004年,感觉自己“从头到脚都处于热恋中”的Courtade 和高源两人步入了婚姻的殿堂。最初两人不得不为了各自的事业分居两地。Courtade在凯隆世家庄园担任了24年的酒窖大师。当时机成熟、Courtade最终决定离开法国来宁夏定居、并正式加入银色高地。

Behind Silver Heights lies a beautiful love story. During her internship at Calon-Ségur, Emma met Thierry Courtade, a French winemaker whose family has been making wine at Calon-Ségur for three generations. Courtade admitted that he fell deeply in love with Emma at first sight, her beauty and warm nature was striking. He took her to visit various wineries and his hometown, in return, Emma would invite him to experience Chinese food and culture. In 2004, Courtade and Emma fell “deeply in love from head to toe” and married. At first, the two had to live apart for their respective careers. Courtade had worked as the cellar master for 24 years at Château Calon Ségur. When the time was right, Courtade finally decided to leave France, settle down in Ningxia and formally join Silver Heights.

高源的丈夫,银色高地核心酿酒师之一吉利 / Emma Gao’s husband, one of the Silver Heights’s core winemakers:  Thierry Courtade

高源父亲一直以来的不忘初心:酿造顶级的中国葡萄酒,将银色高地经营成百年传承的家族酒庄。高源是一个非常开朗、脸上一直挂着明朗笑容的姑娘,有幸的在Vinitaly展会上见到她几次。她为人格外的谦虚,一直在说我们中国的葡萄酒在学习中!她在品鉴会上大方和世界各地的葡萄酒专家交流自己的观点。文如其人,在她的微信推文中读到她描述的她和丈夫吉利(Thierry Courtade的中文名字)之间的话题离不开酿酒。唯一的其他话题就是他们的爱情结晶小Emma。然而话声一转又回到酿酒:“咱们什么时候教小Emma酿酒?”。有一种酿酒是流淌血液里的家族使命吧!

Emma’s father has always remembered his original vision: making top-tier Chinese wine and turning Silver Heights into a family winery which could be passed down from one generation to another. Emma is a very cheerful lady who always carries a big smile on her face. I have been lucky enough to meet her several times at the Vinitaly exhibitions and events. I was able to witness her exchange her views with wine experts from all over the world, at the tastings and seminars. She is extremely modest and keen to learn, she explains that our Chinese wine industry is still in the learning phase! Emma is also a great writer, she publishes many articles on their official WeChat channel. In one such article she says that the conversation between herself and her husband always seems to come back to winemaking. The only exception to this topic is their daughter, who also named as Emma. However, the conversations always somehow come back to winemaking, like: “When should we teach little Emma to make wine?” It seems their kind of winemaking is a family mission, one that flows in the blood!

高源和女儿小Emma同酒庄的饲养的动物合影 / Emma and little Emma with their winery’s animals

高林的远见,造就了中国知名的酿酒师高源。迄今,父亲仍站在女儿的背后,为其照料葡萄园。家族酒庄大概便是如此。而如今,高源的丈夫吉利是酒庄的核心酿酒师之一。有了父亲和丈夫分别在葡萄园和酒窖里掌控着葡萄酒的质量。的确、高源是一个幸福的女人。可以从她温婉的文字和对谁都乐呵呵的开朗性格也可以看出。有着父亲当年的高瞻远瞩,她走上了一条自我实现的道路。也许真正的如山父爱就是如此这般,话语不多、却滋润着你的心田。

Gao Lin’s high vision has established Emma, as a well-known winemaker in China. Up until today, her father is still standing behind his daughter and helping her to take care of the family vineyard – cooperation is a common thread in the case of family wineries. Now, Emma’s husband (whose Chinese name is “Jili”, meaning good luck in Chinese) has become one of the core winemakers  in the winery. Emma’s father and her husband control the quality of wine in the vineyard and cellar respectively. Emma is a happy woman indeed and this is apparent when she speaks, with her gentle words and cheerful disposition. Armed with her father’s foresight, she has embarked on a road of self-realization. Perhaps this is an example of a true family bond between a father and daughter, this bond is without elaborate words but it will make your heart melt!

银色高地阙歌葡萄酒2014年份获得2016年最佳中国葡萄酒 / Sliver Heights – The Summit 2014 has been awarded as the best wine from China in 2016

愿银色高地酿酒家族在优质葡萄酒的道路上越走越远!

May the Silver Heights winemaking family go further and further on their road to producing great quality wine!

银色高地葡萄园员工的开心笑脸 / Sliver Heights’s staff – a happy face in the vineyard

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