In 1892, a businessman named Cheong Fatt Tze vulgo Chang Bishi (1841-1916), a former diplomat in Europe, founded a winery called "Chang Yu" in Yantai in the Chinese province of Shandong. The name is formed from the family name and the Chinese characters for "prosperity". The foundation is established with the beginning of modern wine history China equated. Chang Bishi bought 67 hectares of land and introduced 150 European varieties of Vinifera for trial purposes. He was aware that modern viticulture would only be possible with the support of European experts. The Austrian-Hungarian consul Baron Max von Babo (1862-1933) was hired as a consultant and cellar master; Son of the famous August-Wilhelm von Babo (1827-1894). Babo carried barrels, presses and 400,000 Riesling seedlings out Austria and brought the winery to an international reputation. Under Chang Chengquing (1872-1914), the founding nephew and first general manager, the large cellar was completed, 3,000 hectares of vineyards were created and many products were developed. In 1992, the "Changyu Wine Culture Museum" was opened in the Zhifu district, showing the long history of the winery with many artifacts, but also other Chinese wine producers.
Today, "Yantai Changyu Pioneer Wine Company" is a giant company with international shareholders. There are seven wineries or wineries in China with mostly French imitations Châteaux, as well as others operated abroad. The head office is in Yantai (Shandong). The market share in China is around 25%. Zhou Hongjiang is the general manager of the multinational. The more than 3,000 m² large, seven-meter-deep "Große Keller" is one meter below sea level and only 800 meters from the sea. The wide range of products includes red and white wines as well sparkling wine. brandy. wormwood and cider, The absolute hit is brand wine "Noble Dragon" ( Cabernet Sauvignon. Cabernet Blended ). Around 25 million bottles of the wine produced since 1937 are marketed annually and also exported to Europe. In 2017, the sale of a total of 460 million bottles was celebrated on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the registration of the brand.
Through a joint venture with a French company Castel Frères The Château Changyu Castel winery in Beiyujia (near Yantai) was established in 2002. The vineyards cover 135 hectares. The Golden Valley Icewine is a Jount Venture with the Canadian company Aurora for the production of Eiswein, It was opened in 2006 on Hanlong Lake in Liaoning Province. The mainly with the variety Vidal Blanc planted vineyards cover over 5,000 hectares. Named after the first winemaker from Belgium, Château Changyu Baron Balboa is located in the city of Shihezy in the northwestern region of Xinjiang. Château Changyu Reina, named after the Italian winemaker and investor here, is located in Xiangyang in the province of Shaanxi.
The Château Changyu AFIP is located 70 kilometers northeast of Beijing. It was built in 2007 with a team of investors from China as well as America, France, Italy and Portugal (hence AFIP) with an investment of around € 80 million on an area of 1,000 hectares in the hilly landscape. Over 1,000 barrels are stored in the underground barrel cellar. In addition, an entire French wine village based on the model of the municipality of Bages ( Pauillac ) with a restaurant, cafes and shops and even a church and town hall.
Château Changyu Moser XV in the province of Ningxia was opened in 2013. It is named after the Austrian winemaker Laurenz Moser V., who worked in an advisory capacity (XV refers to the family Moser already in the 15th generation of viticulture). € 70 million was invested in the Château and Keller with 800 barrels. The Grand Vin is a cuvée from Cabernet Sauvignon. Merlot and Syrah,
The last investment in China was after Robert Tinlot (1931-2017), the long-time president of the OIV named Château Tinlot in Yantai. It is a national research institute for grapes, wine and winemaking with two luxurious locks and a novelty for China biological cultivated vineyards. A maximum of 250,000 bottles of wine in the top segment are to be produced annually. The building complex is only part of a planned large international "wine town" on the outskirts of Yantai.
There are other possessions and shares in wineries in France - Bordeaux (Château Mirefleurs and Château Techeney), Spain - Rioja (Marqués del Atrio), New Zealand (Château Changyu Kely), Australia - Clare Valley (Kilikanoon) and Chile (Viña Indómita). The also counts Cognac brand Roullet-Fransac in addition.
The total vineyard area of all wineries is around 14,000 hectares. The annual production is expected to total 150 to 200 million bottles of wine, with sales of around one billion euros. The listed company is worth around 5.5 billion euros (status 2016). Yantai Changyu Pioneer Wine Company is one of the five largest wine companies in the world with the declared goal and also on the way to absolute number 1.
Images: Changyu - Since 1892