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The pioneering winery owned by Balinese native, Ida Bagus Rai Budarsa, got its humble start in 1994 by breaking all the rules that govern wine making. Their first Rosé was made with the unconventional Alphonse-Lavalle table grapes endemic to Bali's north coast. Wine experts – usually between sips of Hatten's Rosé – will insist wine simply can't be made from this particular grape. Continually increasing sales of this popular wine suggest the contrary to be the case.
Located in the heart of Sanur, Hatten's Winery has been at work for a decade bringing Bali's hotels and restaurants a taste of Bali in its gradually increasing range of popular wines.
A visit to the coastal plains of North Bali will take you to vast planted areas where the grape vines are all trained into mile after mile of pergolas. In addition to providing shade to the vineyard's workers, this system also reduces the risk of diseases and sunburn on the grapes - all contributing to a better fruit quality and a better tasting wine. Bali's tropical climate makes for the unique character of local winemaking; grapes are continually harvested from evergreen vines and wine can be produced in several vintages all year long.
Since 1999, Hatten's have also produced wine from the Belgia White Grape, a member of the Muscat family.
Hatten's wine produced from Alphonse-Lavalle grapes consists of the delicate medium dry Rosé, Hatten's first product. Made from the same grape there's also Jepun - created methode champenoise - resulting in a Sparkling Rosé. The surprising Alphonse-Lavalle grapes also produce a young red wine, Hatten's AGA.
In 2002, using Belgia white grapes, Hatten introduced AGA White – a fruity dry white wine together with Tunjung- a dry Sparkling White wine and Alexandria - a bronze medal winner in 2003 London Wine & Spirit competition in the category for semi-sweet wine. Hatten's also produces a limited edition of fortified wine using Methode Pineau des Charentes marketed under the label Pino Bali - available in Red and White versions.
Hatten's Wines 10th anniversary. Something worth popping a cork or two to celebrate!
Memorable Evenings of Good Food and Wine in Bali's Remote Mountain.
Big Tree Farms - a commercial organic farm located at Jatiluwuh in on the slopes of Mount Batu Karu, Bali's second highest peak, is in the midst of serving its 3rd season of Firefly Suppers.
A 6-course degustation menu served in two charming banana leaf huts, each accommodating 10 diners, lit by candlelight and overlooking one of the last primary growth forests in Bali provides a setting that is at once rustic, refined and romantic. Hundreds of coconut torches lend a soft light to the paths that meander throughout the old coffee plantation making for an evening under the stars unlike any other. The meal is comprised entirely of ingredients raised organically by Big Farms – except for the fine wines and cheeses that complement the meal.
The Firefly Supper Series is held each year during Bali's dry season at regular intervals or by special arrangements. Remaining dates for scheduled dinners are September 25, October 16 and October 31.
Rp. 605,000 (approximately US$ 67.25) covers the cost of dinner, wines, service, tax and transportation to and from the dinner venue.
For reservations or more information contact Ben or Blair Ripple of Big Tree Farms at telephone ++62 (0)361-742 4416 or via the e-mail link below.
Sobek Organizes a Triple Challenge for Local Hash Enthusiasts.
On September 12, 2004, a group of 65 Bali Hash members accepted the challenge of the Bali Trihaslon III - an athletic event incorporating runs through scenic Balinese rice fields and terraces; off-track cycling jaunts; and an adrenaline-pumping white-water rafting trip down the fast-moving Telaga Waja River.
Organized by SOBEK – The Adventure Specialists, the Trihaslon III route covered no less than 10 local banjars (hamlets) and 2 Kecamatans (sub districts). A full-day of athletic activity commenced for 13 teams at 9 a.m. with a morning hash run through the villages of Tabu and Wangsian followed by a bike trip through the villages of Laplapan, Tebula, Selat and Muncan. The final sporting segment was a trip down the highest continuous section of the Telaga Waja River.
High on life and the copious quantities of beer that form a part of all Hash event the day concluded with more beer, an evening BBQ in Tabu Village, and chorus after chorus of Hash songs.
Pat Phanekham Brisbane Bound
Popular Hotelier Bids Bali Farewell for New Assignment in Oz.
Pat Phanekham, the pro-active General Manager of the BaliHai Resort and Spa, will end his 5 year affiliation with that property to assume a new post as General Manager of the Stamford Plaza Brisbane, effective October 1, 2004.
Born in Laos and educated there and in Australia, Pat has proven a vital and interested member of Bali's local community during his stay on the island. He has served as the Chairman of the Bali Hotel Association, a committee member of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Bali Chapter in Bali, and Bali SKAL. He has also been an active member of the Rotary Club Nusa Dua, an organization known for its generous program of community support.
Pat's wife, Linda, has also been active in community service via her service as an officer of the Bali International Women's Association (BIWA).
Prior to his Bali assignment, Pat held various senior management positions with Holiday Inn, Southern Pacific Hotels, and ANA Enterprises.
Sad to be leaving Bali, Pat and his wife, Linda, are nonetheless looking forward to his new challenge in Brisbane and the opportunity to re-unite for the first time in 10 years under a single roof with their three daughters now living there.
Jakarta Hotel and Restaurant Association Asks for Share of Taxes for Use in Tourism Promotion.
The Jakarta Chapter of the Indonesia Hotel & Restaurant Association (PHRI) has formally requested a 1-2% rebate of the total taxes paid by its members to help pay for promotion, marketing and educational projects beneficial to Jakarta's tourism.
According to Harisantoso, the Chief Operating Officer of the PHRI – JKT, recent changes in the rules supporting regional autonomy permit the Government to recycle taxes back to the community for worthwhile projects, such as the promotion of tourism to the Nation's Capital.
Tax collections from the hotel and restaurant sector in Jakarta is targeted at Rp. 725 billion (approximately US$ 80.5 million) for 2004. 2% of that amount, if set aside for promotion, would provide US$ 1.6 million to boost the marketing of Jakarta as a destination.
Bali tourism figures will be watching developments closely to see if the PHRI move is successful. In 2001, despite the impact of 9/11, the Bali Government collected over US$ 30 million in hotel and restaurant taxes.
Regent Pledges to Bring Order to Kintamani
Bangli Government Chief Sounds Alarm Over Uncontrolled Development on Batur's Ancient Caldera.
The Regent of the Bangli Regency, I Nengah Arnawa, has again raised the warning that uncontrolled commercial development in Kintamani is destroying the one-of-a-kind natural beauty of the location and threatening the area's future viability as a tourist destination.
The community of Kintamani sits on the caldera of an ancient volcano offering vistas of lake Batur and another, still-active, Batur volcano at the edge of the lake. A lack of building controls has resulted in uncontrolled development of restaurants on the eastern side of the roadway, with large buildings hanging precariously over the old volcano's edge and preventing an uninterrupted view of the majestic volcano and lake below.
The Regent has called for a detailed survey of all existing buildings erected along the eastern side of the road in Kintamani with his eventual goal of outlawing any new developments on the eastern side of the roadway and, over time, causing those building blocking the awe-inspiring view to be relocated to the west side of the road.
Admitting that he has a long battle ahead of him, Regent Arnawa insists steps must be taken now to protect the attractiveness of Kintamani as a tourism destination within Bali.
Valuair - which bills itself as "the region's only quality budget airline operating out of Singapore," says they're looking at adding Bali to its growing list of regional destinations.
Already operating flights from Singapore to Bangkok, Jakarta and Hong Kong with Airbus A-320 equipment, Valuair's CEO, Sim Kay Wee, was recently quoted in the Jakarta press as saying Bali may be the airline's next Indonesian destination following the very successful launch of its twice daily service operating between Jakarta and Singapore. Encouraged by the promise that the fiscal tax for Indonesian residents would soon be abolished, Sim felt that business both to and from Indonesia would soon be booming.
Boasting a "transparent approach" to budget airline pricing, the airline is offering round trip fares between Jakarta and Singapore starting at US$ 70.
Bali Handicraft Makers Face Wood Shortage
Diminishing Silk Tree Plantations Leave Local Carvers with Little to Chisel.
With tighter controls on the inter-island shipment of timber stocks, Balinese handicraft and furniture makers are increasingly dependent on the wood of the locally grown Albizia procera - a fast-growing tree that thrives in tropical conditions. Also known as the silk tree or mimosa tree, due to the silky thread-like filaments of it annual flowering, the tree achieves full growth in it 10-20 year life cycle with its numerous seed pods ensuring rapid self-propagation.
Local craftsmen, however, are complaining that the popular and easily worked albizia wood is becoming increasing difficult to come by. The Chairman of the Association of Indonesian Handicraft exporters and Producers (ASEPHI), Ngurah Pratama Citra, recently warned that if corrective action was not taken soon a number of handicraft producers would go bankrupt.
The demand for Balinese stocks of albizia by furniture and handicraft makers in Java in combination with government regulations forbidding the planting of albizia have made the wood in short supply, increasing the cost of a cubic meter from Rp. 800,000 (approximately US$ 89) to Rp. 1.5 million (approximately US$ 167).
Local government authorities have forbidden the planting of new albizia stocks, claiming the trees destroy soil fertility; a claim denied by many local farmers and wood stock consumers who say little scientific proof exists to support the Government's ban.
Faced with limited supplies of wood, higher prices and increased low-cost competition from handicraft suppliers in overseas markets, such as China and Vietnam – Balinese handicraft and furniture makers are feeling themselves slowly squeezed out of business.
ASEPHI has called on the government to take definite steps to ensure a constant supply of wood to local producers, including again allowing the planting of new albizia forests.
The Grapes of Vasse
Vasse Felix Vineyard - Margaret River's Premier Vintager - A Special Tasting Session at Kori's Restaurant on September 29.
Owned by Mrs. Janet Holmes à Court, the Vasse Felix Vineyard located in the Margaret River valley of southwest Australia – is an area long considered "near perfect" for viticulture. Gravel loam soils, summer sea breezes off the Indian Ocean, wet winters followed by warm, dry summers – all combine to support a wide range of varietals and produce memorable and sometimes noble Sauvignon, Shiraz, Merlot, Chardonnay, Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc.
Special One Night Tasting - September 29
Kori's Restaurant on Poppie Lane II in Kuta is hosting a special evening tasting of 5 separate wines from the Vasse Felix cellars. Running from 6:30 p.m. until 8 p.m. at the Restaurant's Ria Ria Room and Cocktail Bar on Wednesday September 29, 2004, tasters will have the chance to quaff Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Classic Dry Red, Chardonnay and Semillon while chatting with the Winemaker over canapés provided by the restaurant.
The cost for participation in the wine tasting is Rp. 250,000 (approximately US$ 27) per person.
Advance booking is a must as space is limited. Call Armie, Irene or Putu at ++62-(0)361-758605 or send an e-mail via the link below.
Fourth Largest Inbound Market in Jeopardy as a result of Air Paradise and Garuda Suspension of Seoul Flights.
Bali's official carrier Air Paradise International has suspended indefinitely its thrice-weekly flights connecting Bali and Seoul, effective September 9, 2004.
Equipment limitations and scheduling issues had reportedly caused passenger delays on the Seoul service. The Airline's management took the step of canceling the service until such a time as aircraft availability increases, allowing the airline to resume service to on the Bali - Seoul sector.
Passengers holding tickets on the Soeul service are being given full refunds.
Air Paradise International continues to operate a fleet of aircraft flying regular services between Bali and 4 major gateways in Australia – Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth.
Garuda Suspends Seoul Flights
The cancellation of the Air Paradise service to Seoul follows the recent suspension of Garuda Indonesia's five times a week service to Seoul.
Fourth Largest Inbound Market
The sudden evaporation of saleable seats between Bali and Seoul would seem to defy market logic and is said to be causing havoc with Korean operators who report strong demand for Bali, particularly among Korean honeymooners. Direct Korean arrival statistic during the first seven months of 2004 for Bali totaled 45,576, making it the fourth largest source of visitors to Bali after the Japanese, Australian and Taiwanese markets.
Textiles of Indonesia
Exhibition and Sale of Rare Indonesian Textiles at the Alila Ubud Gallery.
Alila Ubud Bali in cooperation with Dharma Mulia Galleries will host an exhibition and sale of rare and unusual textiles of the Indonesian archipelago from September 25 - October 20, 2004.
The exhibition's opening at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, September 25, will be preceded at 5:00 p.m. with a lecture on the history and various textile traditions found in Indonesia by Ms. Toni Tack.
The Alila Ubud Gallery is open daily from 10:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.
One Death and Several Injuries Attributed to September 15 Earthquake.
A prolonged 5.5 Richter scale earthquake with an epicenter just 7 kilometers west of Bali's capital, Denpasar, occuring at a depth of 80 kilometers beneath the ocean struck at 4:35 p.m. local time on Wednesday, September 15, 2004. The quake sent many residents and visitors scurrying to the streets in search of safer open spaces.
While there were no reports of damage to local structures and buildings resulting from the earthquake, the same cannot be said for the resulting panic.
The sustaining quake, which rumbled for nearly half a minute, is blamed for one death and two injuries. A 33 year-old construction worker at Bali's Udayana University reportedly panicked when the earthquake struck and jumped from an upper story of the under-construction Literature Faculty building. As a result of that fall, I Ketut Surdana, suffered massive head injuries and died before arriving at the local hospital's emergency room. In downtown Denpasar, another construction worker broke his ankle when he fell down a flight of stairs and a worker at a local garment company suffered facial cuts when he also fell down a set of stairs at his place of employment.
Bali's position near the convergence of a number of tectonic plates in the earth's surface destines the island to experience regular earthquakes, most of a minor amplitude and unnoticed by most local residents.
The links below provide access to the graphical version of the Bali Update.