With wine glasses in hand, approximately 500 Asian American professionals and wine enthusiasts filled the Green Room inside the War Memorial Veterans Building in San Francisco, on June 19, often pausing to chat with old friends or stopping to meet new ones.
The event, “A Community Affair: Summer in the City, Wine Tasting With Asian American Community Organizations” gave the public a chance to sample over 50 wines ranging from pinot noirs to cabernet sauvignons and at the same time learn more about 15 Bay Area Asian nonprofits and community groups, including the Asian Women’s Resource Center, Kearny Street Workshop, and the Young Filipinos Professional Association.
Co-hosted by Les Tso, a veteran in the beverage industry, and Aggregate Productions, the event was one of almost a handful Tso has organized geared towards the Asian American community.
“In the last five years, wine has really taken off, and this includes within the ethnic communities,” says Tso, “Wine has become a drink of choice for many young Asian professionals who can found at wine events, classes, and in Napa and Sonoma. However, since they picked up wine themselves or through friends, rather than their parents, they are still defining their consideration set.”
Tso said one of the best ways to develop your palate, is to taste and compare wines side-by-side.
Otto Han, retail manager at Dee Vine Wines, believes wine is popular among Asian Americans because compared to other alcoholic beverages, it is lower in alcohol content, which makes it easier to consume socially. Also, he says a lot of great wines are paired well with Asian food.
Darryl Chiang, Asian American Theater Company’s Interim Executive Director and Board Chair, said the event was a great way for his organization to promote the premiere production of the dark comedy “Fayette-Nam” and for him to meet a lot of people that he has corresponded with through email but never met in person.
“How often do you get to see all these great community people together in one place?” muses Chiang. “In the arts there are places for live performances, and in terms of community building there ais a need for face to face meetings, and this event was a great opportunity to do that.”
Attendee Jeff Woo, a financial advisor interested in becoming more involved in the community, said the event was “wonderful” and a great chance to learn about the participating Asian American organizations.
Photos by www.MatthewMa.com.