Koshu of Japan sets date for its annual UK tasting event

Koshu of Japan has announced the date for its 8th annual trade and press tasting; the event is due to take place on 14 February at 67 Pall Mall in London. 

Koshu of Japan is an organisation established in July 2009 by leading wine makers from the Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan's premier wine-growing region. 

At the tasting attendees will have the opportunity to taste an extensive list of Koshu wines from nine leading wineries. The focus of the tasting will be on the new 2017 vintage of Koshu, in addition to a smaller selection of international grape varieties including Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. 

The distinctly Japanese Koshu grape was developed from grapes that travelled the Silk Road across Central Asia from the Caucasus to China and then to Japan, at a period estimated to be around a thousand years ago. 

Due to the beneficial climactic extremes, long days of sunlight and well-drained volcanic soils, the landlocked Yamanashi Prefecture (which emcompasses the northern part of Mount Fuji) has become Japan's most premium wine-growing region, producing some of the finest expressions of Koshu wines. 

The wines are traditionally a pale, straw colour with soft, fruity aromas and overtones of peach and citrus that pair well with traditional Japanese dishes, such as sushi, tempura and yakitori. The distinctive characteristics of Koshu wine have been proving popular in the UK over recent years, with listings in major retailers such as Marks & Spencer and Selfridges. 

Lynne Sherriff MW, European Director for Koshu of Japan, said: "2017 was a very good vintage for Joshu, due to a dry early summer, with the grapes being harvested in a healthy condition. Rains in September made it difficult for later ripening varieties, such as Cabernet Sauvignon. Almost all white grape varieties, including Koshu as well as early ripening reds such as Merlot, gave good results and the 2018 tasting in London will certainly reflect that."

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