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Connoisseur classes

Grasp the grape at this weekend's Penfolds Wine Lounge at the Emporium

Australian winemaker Penfolds has resumed its wine-appreciation classes at the Emporium. You can learn the intricacies of the grape each day until Sunday in the mall's Fashion Hall.

Head winemaker Stephanie Dutton is among the experts covering topics such as "Savour Every Drop", which includes storage methods, and "The Art of Blending", focusing on the grape varieties that give each wine its unique character. You get to sample a Chardonnay, Shiraz, Cabernet and a blend made from them to experience the range of Penfolds wines.

You learn how to pair specific wines with specific Thai dishes. The wine can't overpower or mask the intense piquancy, pleasing sweetness and aromatic herbs of Thai food, nor be overwhelmed itself.

Dutton will offer tips and recommend wines for specific occasions throughout the weekend. She's been with Penfolds since 2007, working alongside such celebrated winemakers as Ray Beckwith at the Magill Estate in Adelaide. "I feel a strong custodial responsibility and loyalty being attached to the team," she says. "The experience certainly isn't lost on me - no part of it is taken for granted."

She'd worked at fine-dining restaurants since university and has subsequently built up an impressive repertoire of skills and qualifications.

Dutton's current role as Penfolds "ambassador" allows her to share stories of the firm's emerging and innovative wines with enthusiasts, restaurateurs and the news media.



School days

The Penfolds Wine Lounge is in the ground-floor Fashion Hall of the Emporium until Sunday, daily from 11am till 9pm.

Book a spot through Bangkok Beer & Beverages at (02) 716 5521-4, extension 217, or thanravee@bbb.co.th.




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