Aythaya: Wine from Myanmar

May 3, 2009


Nice peacock label

Did you know that also Burma (Myanmar) produces wines (some more “new latitude wines”, I guess)? Well, that’s an exotic place to grow the noble grape vine, isn’t it. We know of Burma only that it is a military dictatorship denying Aung San Suu Kyi the win in an election 20 years ago. Cyclone Nargis comes to mind and the devastation it brought to the Irrawadi delta. But grape wines and wine production?


The wine from Myanmar

Watch out. My friend Wolfgang brought me a bottle of Myanmar wine, to be precise a bottle of ‘2006 Aythaya Myanmar Rose Muscat’. Grown in Aythaya village near Inle lake in the Southern Shan States at an altitude of 1,300 meters this rosé wine is produced by Myanmar Vineyards Estate Ltd.. It seems that a bunch of Germans up there is attempting to do the impossible and produce fine wines.


The colour, a dark rosé

The plastic cork was not to my liking. The colour of the wine, a deep rosé, however, was quite appealing. A slight aroma of raisin (is it from the Muscat?), I thought to detect. The swish in the mouth was not what I expected. The bottle must have been exposed to some unfortunate conditions. I took a second sip. Not my wine, I must admit. No fruit, could be any liquid, I guess.

From the website of the estate I learned that the venture started in 1997 and that the first wine was made in 2004. Exports started in 2006 and put Burma on the world wide map of wine production. I hope my next bottle will be OK. The grape varieties grown are Muscat, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon. Also a Grappa is produced. Unfortunately, one cannot access the references (articles in newspapers) given on the webpage. I will have to find out more about this vineyard. Stay tuned to Myanmar wines.