At first glance, I knew I would enjoy my trip Bishan Vineyard. I immediately felt like I was back home in the hills again with the greenery, piercing white clouds in the blue sky and crispy breeze.
In order to welcome us, we were treated to Chinese cultural performance like fire-breathing and mask changing Sichuan drama, modern dance and local opera. I remember when I first moved to China and expected everything to look like a scene out of a karate movie. Now that I know better, I appreciate the traditional shows of culture when I encounter them.
|Fire Breathing and Mask Changing Sichuan Drama|
|Queen of the Bishan Vineyard 2015|
And speaking of style, it seems the grapes aren't the only things from France...
|Fan Bing Bing, famous Chinese actress, at Cannes Festival 2015|
|Sorry I couldn't do that to my friends.|
But here are the winning grapes, Summer Black
Every Chongqing vineyard comes with a local restaurant that allows you taste authentic Sichuan cuisine and here was no different. Every dish was 'soaked in chilli and prickly ash' and for the first time in a long time, I struggled to finish a spicy meal.
I spent more time with the fish which was more plainly seasoned and were reared in the pool right outside the door.
In China, it is very common for customers to have a brief meet and greet with their dinner in a nearby fishing tank. But the pool afforded these guys much freedom and they simply carried their party elsewhere every time we showed up.
But it was made up by spotting this beauty on the way out. I haven't seen this tree since my days growing up and learning the hard way not to play with everything you see.
|Prickly Pear Cactus|
Also located in Bishan is one of five Lourdes churches in China. And just amazing is the fact that it's still standing in the midst of many other church demolitions throughout the country.
The property is quite huge and filled with beautiful scenery. Most of the buildings have been converted to tourist sites but for a 100 year place, very spiffy.
The close proximity of a vineyard and church may or may not be coincidence but both places can be life-changing if you allow them to be. This Travelling Nutmeg will note this visit under spiritually defining moments.