Cheers! Santé! – Wine Appreciation Club

By Laurent Cambon, Current MBA Student, and Mathieu François, Graduating Class of 2011.

In a very diverse MBA class, it is inevitable we get exposed to the richness of culture and gustatory delights of the countries represented. So, two of us from France started the Wine Appreciation Club to share a common, yet very important part of our culture – Wines. I have always been passionate about food and wines. To me, they are integral components of that which we consider French culture. Nearly all the 22 regions of France produce their own wines, each of which were developed to match the region’s cuisine. “If I have to choose wine according to conventional wisdom, I would opt for a very famous wine like Romanée-Conti from Bourgogne. But I prefer to answer based on my personal feelings. I have family roots in the South of France. So, each time I appreciate a Châteauneuf-du-pape, many memories and sensations from this region come to my mind, especially when I was a child. To be more specific, Château Mont-redon is certainly one of the best from this Côtes-du-rhône category,” adds by my co-initiator, Mathieu. This diversity of wines contributes invariably to the richness of French culture.

In Singapore, wines are just aplenty and you can get them easily- in groceries, or wine depots, to shopping malls, to even convenience stores available 24 hours. And the variety is just really great- coming from all the wine producing countries, including the best wine producer – France, of course.

The Wine Appreciation Club was set up with the aim of extending our passion for wines to other MBA students. Some of the initiatives of the Club include helping students identify the type of wines they already appreciate, introducing them to new wines, and inviting them to wine tasting processes that would enable them to appreciate wines better.

Sessions were not complete without food – we paired whites, reds and ‘bubbly’ or champagnes with food. Surely, members of the club, both the new and seasoned ones, took pleasure in every session in the appreciation of wine.

Even though Wine Tasting is not a course in the MBA curriculum, we believe that it would serve as a complementary component in the life of an MBA student, who will soon be actively engaged in business dinners or in social gatherings. We hope to see this club continue in the new academic year.

Our first event – Wine Appreciation-White Wines, attracted 14 wine lovers, curious souls and converts.

Wine Appreciation - White Wines

Wine Appreciation: White Wines

The Club’s second event  – Wine Appreciation-Red Wines; Me (Laurent, first from left, in green) and Mathieu (2ndfrom right, last row) together with our peers
Wine Appreciation: Red Wines

Wine Appreciation: Red Wines

And as a last hurrah to end T3 (and for some of us in the NANYANG-WASEDA Program who graduated recently in July), we had a special guest in our Champagnes session, which made the session more delightful – our ‘unofficial’ mascot.

Wine Appreciation: Champagnes

An ‘English’ Breakfast to start the MBA journey – 18 attend Intensive English Class.

by: MBA Office

During an early July morning  ,  a group of 18 MBA participants from the new intake gathered for an “English breakfast’ – not really a typical English breakfast, but a yummy McDonald’s breakfast before they head out for  their Intensive English Class, part of the Pre –Term program.  Coming from China, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Italy, Mexico, Vietnam, and Indonesia, the first ‘official function’ together  allowed them to warm up to each other  and get to know each other – and also get to meet face to face the MBA Office staff whom they have been communicating prior to their arrival in Singapore.  Here are some snippets to share: 

A group photo for early birds who grabbed breakfast with us!

Students enjoying a fun time getting to know each other.

Vida (third from left, wearing a very nice hat that we all loved) from Zhuhai City, China,  was ecstatic to meet people from different nations, and to have an eclectic experience of culture and gastronomy, “At Nanyang, you can not only meet people from other countries and get to eat food with mixed flavours (am looking forward to such experience) , but also you can learn and experience a diverse set of cultures. The most often used question for people you first meet in Singapore, especially in class, is ‘Where are you originally from?’ Need I say more?”

Italian student, Giuseppe (in red shirt, first from left), shared with us how he felt the warm welcome by his peers when he first arrived at the Graduate Hall (this is where most MBA students stay, located in the nice green campus).  “My fellow Nanyang MBA participants  who arrived earlier , certainly welcomed me… they helped me to organize my stuff and gave me my ‘first orientation’ about Nanyang … how to move around this huge campus of 200 hectares (!). I immediately felt at home with their help!”

After the breakfast, we all took a short walk to the English Class, where the conversations of their ‘first time in Singapore’ experience continues –

Some of the  MBA Office staff (in the first photo, standing – from left, Rachel, Yuni and Nick) spending time with the group.

As the academic year has yet to commence, the students are looking forward to an exciting year, meeting   and learning with friends and exchanging knowledge . As Giuseppe puts it, “At Nanyang, you will meet friends from all over the world; together, you will enjoy the countless facilities of the campus and vibrant nightlife of the dragon city,  Singapore. But most important, you get to experience with them, “ The NANYANG MBA experience.”