The image shows three bottles of Chateau Lafite-Rothschild 1799. [File photo]
Turning 30 is cause for a big party, so when Chang Jie celebrated his 30th birthday at a karaoke bar in Beijing recently, cases of 2009 Chateau Lafite were in high demand.
"Bordeaux is best," he said without offering any justification. Then without any swirling, sniffing or sipping he sculled the glass of wine in his hand.
Many Chinese mainlanders consider Chateau Lafite to be the best French wine.
"It stands head and shoulders above anything else in terms of its brand recognition," said Campbell Thompson, an Australian and co-owner of the wine importing and distribution company The Wine Republic.
"The French are leaders in the gift-giving and corporate dining market. Australian wine just simply doesn't have the same cachet among these consumers," he added.
Despite not being able to match France's leading 50 percent market share in China, there is some good news for Australian wine producers. Overall demand for its wine is experiencing strong growth.