Long Dai

Qiu Shan Valley, China

Domaine de Long Dai is nestled at the heart of the Qiu Shan Valley in the Shandong Province in the North eastern part of China. 

The vines, planted in 2011 on terraces built in the granite soils from the foothills of the Qiu Shan Valley, benefit from Shandong’s beautiful late-season growing grapes that can be harvested at full maturity, by hand, through successive pickings. The 420 terraces we have planted each require specific care because of the difference in terms of terroir and how they influence the development of the vines.

We adapt our actions throughout the growing season, as well as to determine the optimal harvest date so that the grapes reach perfect maturity. 

Long Dai Qiu Shan Valley, China
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Vintages

  • Vintage 2018

    • Cabernet Sauvignon,
    • Marselan,
    • Cabernet Franc

    2018 vintage will probably go down as a benchmark vintage in Shandong province, with optimal ripening of the grapes and good balance in the wines. The season started with spring conditions that encouraged growth in the vineyard, with alternating scattered rain showers and sunny days. The flowering conditions from 1 to 4 June were very favourable for fruit set and resulted in good bunch numbers for all our grape varieties. August was marked by a period of intense drought, resulting in a uniform and high-quality veraison and an excellent state of health through to the end of the season.

    The harvest then took place under very good late-season conditions, giving a crop of exceptional quality. Meticulous zoning work in the plots, according to the ripening balance for each terrace, is carried out each year to select the optimal harvest date for each terroir. We were thus able to start the harvest with our first plots of Merlot on 12 September and finished with Cabernet Sauvignon from 5 to 13 October.

    TASTING NOTES (at bottling)

    Initially the nose is subtly imbued with black fruit such as blueberry, quickly giving way to spicy notes like nutmeg and liquorice. On aeration, it reveals floral scents of hawthorn and violet, emblematic of Marselan on the Long Dai terroir. The palate is concentrated and dominated by black fruit, with blueberry and blackberry followed by roasted and cocoa notes. It is finely structured by rich and elegant tannins supporting good length on the palate.

  • Vintage 2017

    • Cabernet Sauvignon,
    • Marselan,
    • Cabernet Franc

    The most notable characteristic of this vintage was the relatively dry start to the growth season. The lack of water enabled better control of the overly vigorous growth that typically occurs later, especially in the second phase of the season, which is traditionally accompanied by rainy spells. Particularly heavy rain arrived on 3 August (150 mm in a few hours) followed by a hailstorm on the western side of the vineyard on 5 August.

    Although dramatic, neither of these events had a significant direct impact on the vines, the damage being limited to some washout erosion in some of the steeper areas. We benefitted from beautiful late summer weather throughout the ripening period. Differences between day and night-time temperatures were more marked this year, which was good for the grapes’ phenolic development, and also helped to keep the vines in optimal health. In order to harvest at the best time, we made up to three rounds of selective picking among the various plots.

    The low rainfall at the start of the season strongly influenced yields, which were around 20 hl/ha. The very precise zoning of the plots resulted in the harvests being spread over a longer period. These began on 8 September and ended on 25 October, with a total of ten full days of picking.

    TASTING NOTES (at bottling)

    The nose is marked by black fruits like blackberry and blueberry, and the Marselan grape variety brings in subtle hints of sweet spice and violet. The attack is fresh and lively, on the palate, the wine shows a nice amplitude and elegant tannins that have benefited from an aging of 18 months in French oak barrels.