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Château Mercian Mariko Winery Chosen Yet Again By “World’s Best Vineyards 2022”

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November 18, 2022

Mercian Corporation

● Third year in a row in the Top 100, ranked 53rd
● Only Japanese winery to be chosen (again) among 2,000 global wineries
● Wines imported and sold by Mercian Group from five ranking wineries also selected

TOKYO, November 18, 2022 – Mercian Corporation’s Château Mercian Mariko Winery placed 53rd in the World's Best Vineyards 2022(https://www.worldsbestvineyards.com), held in Argentina on October 26 (local time). The Château Mercian Mariko Winery is the only Japanese winery to have placed in the competition three years in a row. Other winners include five wineries whose wines are imported and sold by Mercian Corporation: González Byass - Bodegas Tío Pepe (Spain) in 6th place, Robert Mondavi Winery (United States) in 7th place, Trapiche (Argentina) in 17th place, Opus One Winery (United States) in 24th place, and Penfolds Magill Estate (Australia) in 49th place.

As a leading winery in Japan, Château Mercian will continue to produce high-quality Japanese wines and communicate this homegrown quality domestically and internationally to expand brand recognition as well as contribute to the overall development of the Japanese wine industry.

World’s Best Vineyards

World's Best Vineyards is organized and compiled by William Reed Business Media (WRBM). The awards highlight the 100 best vineyards globally, and started guiding travelers to the finest wine experiences in the world. Now running for the fourth time, the awards were launched in 2019. WRBM also hosts the International Wine Challenge (IWC), the world's foremost wine competition. Château Mercian Hokushin Chardonnay 2019 received the highest score for Japanese wine in this year’s IWC awards.

Approximately 500 experts, including world-class sommeliers, wine journalists, and travel professionals, nominate seven wineries for the best winery experience from those they have visited since January 1, 2016. There is no pre-determined list or criteria other than what is publicly available, including tour content at the winery, tasting, ambiance, wine quality, food, staff, scenery, value for money, prestige and location, etc. The experts vote for the their top seven wineries they think offer the best overall experience in the world and that they would highly recommend to a friend. The 100 best wineries are selected from these nominees. 2022 saw over 2,000 wineries nominated.

Château Mercian Mariko Winery

Opened in 2003 in Ueda City, nestled in the breathtaking Japanese Alps in Nagano Prefecture, the vineyard is a 29-hectare estate that cultivates eight varieties of grapes, including Merlot, Chardonnay, Syrah and Sauvignon Blanc. In 2019, Mercian Corporation opened the Château Mercian Mariko Winery on the hillside of the vineyard, where visitors can see the entire process from grape growing to winemaking. The wines from the Mariko Vineyard have been used at official events in Japan.

Quotes From Château Mercian Winemakers

Mr. Mitsuhiro Anzo, Château Mercian General Manager

"With the prolonged COVID-19 issue, it has been difficult for us to welcome overseas visitors in Japan; but we feel very grateful to have been selected as a World's Best Vineyard again this year. We are gradually receiving more and more visitors from overseas, and we hope that more and more people from all over the world will come to the Château Mercian Mariko Winery in the future. Our staff members look forward to showing you the joy of wine through our vast vineyards, winery tours, and wine tastings. We will continue to do our best to improve the value of Japanese wine and make Japan recognized as one of the world's foremost wine regions."

Mr. Hironori Kobayashi, Château Mercian Mariko Winery Manager

"For the third year in a row, the Château Mercian Mariko Winery has received worldwide recognition. We are truly grateful. We want to continue to be a winery that grows together with the local community, valuing coexistence with the region, nature, and the future. We would also like to further tell the story of the Mariko Winery to our gradually increasing number of overseas visitors. We will do our best in grape cultivation and winemaking with a passionate desire to make Mariko Winery, Château Mercian, and Japan one of the world's foremost wine regions."

Mercian Group Imports Wines From These Five Other Winners

No. 6: González Byass - Bodegas Tío Pepe (Spain)

González Byass, founded in 1835, is one of the leading figures in the development of sherry into a world-famous wine. In addition to their extensive private tours, they opened the world's first "sherry hotel" in the center of Jerez in 2020, offering not only a great experience in the wineries, but also an even finer experience in Jerez, creating a comprehensive and wonderful wine tourism experience.

No. 7: Robert Mondavi Winery (USA)

Founded in 1966 by Robert Mondavi, this is the winery that led California to become one of the world's most famous wine regions. Visitors can experience wines from the To Kalon Vineyard - which means "the most beautiful" in Greek - with spectacular views, including Robert Mondavi's Fumé Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon, which exudes an inexpressible quality, an almost mystical feeling. The region made a major leap from 40th place last year to 7th place, and was also named the top North American wine destination for the fourth year in a row.

No. 17: Trapiche (Argentina)

Founded in 1883, Trapiche's pioneering spirit continues to change the way people view the world of Argentine wine. With a winery and vineyards in a spectacular location overlooking the Andes Mountains, a museum explaining the philosophy of biodynamic farming, and a tour that includes a visit to the vegetable garden of Espacio Trapiche - a highly acclaimed restaurant in the gastronomy world – Trapiche received high marks.

No. 24: Opus One Winery (United States)

Synonymous with premium wines created by Robert Mondavi and Baron Philippe de Rothschild, two giants of the California and Bordeaux wine worlds. When you visit the winery, you are greeted by an elegant colonnaded building that combines classic European motifs with uniquely Californian touches and a garden that is filled with attention to detail that reveals an uncompromising commitment to the quality of its wines.

No. 49: Penfolds Magill Estate (Australia)

Magill Estate in Penfolds is one of Australia's oldest estates and has played an important role in Australian winemaking, particularly through its Shiraz. As one of the few urban wineries in the world, guests can dine overlooking the vineyards and enjoy a variety of tastings at the cellar door. A sumptuous degustation dinner in the restaurant provides the ultimate Magill Estate experience.

About Kirin Holdings

Kirin Holdings Company, Limited is an international company that operates in the Food & Beverages domain (Food & Beverages businesses), Pharmaceuticals domain (Pharmaceuticals businesses), and Health Science domain (Health Science business), both in Japan and across the globe.

Kirin Holdings can trace its roots to Japan Brewery which was established in 1885. Japan Brewery became Kirin Brewery in 1907. Since then, the company expanded its business with fermentation and biotechnology as its core technologies, and entered the pharmaceutical business in the 1980s, all of which continue to be global growth centers. In 2007, Kirin Holdings was established as a pure holding company and is currently focusing on boosting its Health Science domain.

Under the Kirin Group Vision 2027 (KV 2027), a long-term management plan launched in 2019, the Kirin Group aims to become “A global leader in CSV*, creating value across our world of Food & Beverages to Pharmaceuticals.” Going forward, the Kirin Group will continue to leverage its strengths to create both social and economic value through its businesses, with the aim of achieving sustainable growth in corporate value.

* Creating Shared Value: combined added value for consumers as well as for society at large.


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