Silver Heights

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silver-heights-shelved-wineSilver Heights is regarded as one of Ningxia’s finest boutique wineries and represents a new wave of exceptional producers at the forefront of China’s viticultural revolution. Founded by father and daughter Lin Gao and Emma Gao in 2007 after a 10-year search for the ideal site, Silver Heights is set in the foothills of the Helan Mountains in China’s northwestern Ningxia province.


This wine is layered with fresh black and red fruit flavors and coffee, toffee, white chocolate aromas from the oak influence. Everytertiary notes such as earthness and cigar are emerging after several years of aging. It has a rounded full body with softand smooth tannin, delicate acitdity and long finish with coffee berry floral notes. Long aging potential.


“The Summit” reveals an attractive array of ripe dark fruitand spice with hints of oak. Great fruit concentration on thepalate with flavour layers and well-modulated tannins.


Aromatic nose of cassis and herbs. Elegance and finesse on the palate. Well-structured, fruit and oak are well integrated and the tannins are subtle and soft.


Aromatic nose of cassis and herbs. Elegance and finesse on the palate. Well-structured, fruit and oak are well integrated and the tannins are subtle and soft.


Aromatic nose of cassis and herbs. Elegance and finesse on the palate. Well-structured, fruit and oak are well integrated and the tannins are subtle and soft.

Silver Heights Winery

Lin Gao had long believed that Ningxia had the potential to be a world-class wine region and he persuaded his daughter, Emma, to study winemaking in Bordeaux. While there Emma interned at several top estates including Château Calon-Ségur where she fell in love with and married winemaker Thierry Courtade. The couple soon moved to China and began working with Emma’s father to make tiny quantities of wine on her parents’ farm.

China has been a vast fine wine market for a few years now, and the county is now a reputable producer as well. Wine in China is getting better every year, thanks to its diverse climate and passionate people behind exciting wineries.

Silver Heights is a leading winery in Ningxia, China’s own “Napa Valley.” Here, fine red wine takes another meaning — the wine is spectacular! Here’s all you need to know about Silver Heights Winery, its wines and the talented people behind it.

If you thought you knew fine wine, be prepared to be surprised. You can’t talk about premium wine without mentioning what’s happening in China.

The Winery

Silver Heights calls Ningxia home. Here, the estate produces premium red wines with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Gernishcht AKA Carménère.

The winery is headed by Emma Gao, a female winemaker with winemaking studies and experience in France; she worked at prestigious classified Chateaux, including Lafon-Rochet and Calon-Segúr.

The founder, Gao Lin, created this estate in 2007, which soon grew from producing 6,000 bottles to 200,000 thousand in just over a decade.

The year in Silver Heights starts in spring when the team unearths the vines covered with dirt to survive Ningxia’s harsh winter. The estate’s 45 hectares of vines are tended organically and worked by hand.

Silver Heights has a beautiful batch of ripe grapes to produce its award-winning wine at the time of harvest.

In the winery, the winemaking process is very much traditional and meticulous, and it’s inspired by the great Chateaux in Bordeaux. The fermentations are cold and slow, and Malo-lactic fermentation is allowed for all wines.

After that, Silver Height’s wines spend time in barrels where they rest and evolve to become some of China’s most outstanding wines. Of course, man’s hand plays a vital role in making such astounding wines, but mother nature plays her part as well.

The Terroir

Silver Heights is located on the eastern hillside of Helan Mountain, Ningxia Autonomous Region. Altitudes here can reach 1,100 - 1,300 metres, and the region enjoys plenty of sunshine during the growing season.

The mountains surrounding the area protect it from the cold winds coming from the Tengger Desert, but the winters are still cold enough for grape growers to bury the vines every year under 30 cm of earth. There’s little to no rain in Ningxia, which helps grapevines produce fruit with great concentration.

If you thought Silver Heights was inspired by the grand estates in Bordeaux, know that it shares similar soil with them as well. Silver Heights’s vineyards are planted in poor gravelly soils not dissimilar to what you’d find in the Medoc.

Ningxia is gaining recognition for its red wines, but producers make diverse wine styles, including white, rosé and sparkling wine. Everything is possible when you have a prestigious terroir, expert hands and a clear vision.

Ningxia’s wine is amongst the best in China, and the wine is now up there with the best in the world. Let’s explore Silver Height’s wine catalogue and discover its most prized labels.

The Wine

Silver Heights produces spectacular red wine, but their collection is more than that; they now offer a thoughtful selection of white and rosé as well. The finest wine in the estate’s collection is Emma’s Reserve, a private release supervised by winemaker Emma Gao herself, from grape to bottle.

Only 2,000 bottles are produced every year, making it an exclusive offering. This is a 50% Cabernet 50% Merlot. The winery’s flagship wine is The Summit, a 60% Cabernet Sauvignon 40% Merlot made with hand-picked grapes fermented and aged in new French oak barrels for a year. This wine can age.

The Family Reserve is a more approachable red wine with the exact composition of the wine above, but it has less oak influence. The Last Warrior Red is an uncomplicated but delicious combination of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Merlot — this is a fresh and fruity wine meant to be enjoyed young. Silver Heights also produces a couple of white wines.

The Family Reserve

Chardonnay is aged in 20% new Burgundy Barrels, and the Last Warrior White, a 70% Chardonnay 30% Riesling, is also aged in 30% Burgundy barrels. Last but not least, the winery releases a cherry-hued rosé, Rosé Reserve, which rewards your palate with hints of sweetness.

Wine to Try

Emma’s Reserve

Emma’s Reserve is made with equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The grapes are grown organically; they’re hand-picked and carefully selected. After crushing, they undergo cold maceration and a meticulous temperature-controlled fermentation. Emma’s Reserve spends 24 months in 100% French new oak barrels, and it’s treated very much as a Bordelaise Premier Cru.

Expect an inky red wine with blackberries and cassis on the nose, followed by expressive brown spices and vanilla. The palate is bold and structured, showing the wine’s age-worthiness. This spectacular red wine is best enjoyed with Wagyu steaks and Peking duck.

Food Pairings

Silver Height’s wines have a strong French influence, which means they have versatility at the table. The estate’s most exclusive red wines, Emma’s Reserve and The Summit, can be enjoyed for decades, and they pair well with protein-rich and fatty food, including red meat, game, duck and hard cheese.

The more approachable red wines, Family Reserve and Last Warrior Red are perfect for everyday enjoyment, and they go great with pork ribs and chops, lean red meat and hearty stews and casseroles.

The winery’s white wines are ideal for creamy white sauces and roasted poultry, and the rosé is a stand-alone sipper.

China’s Best-Kept Secret

China is a wine powerhouse; the secret is out. And although there are many wine regions in the immense country, Ningxia is carrying the torch for quality and creativity.

Silver Heights is amongst the most extraordinary ambassadors for the region, and the estate’s quality and prestige are off the charts. If you haven’t tried Chinese wine, Silver Heights will set the bar high. The country is taking the world of wine by storm, and the quality improves every year.

For fine wine, Silver Heights has you covered. It has something for you for weeknights as well!