Ningxia is located about 1,330 kilometers west of Beijing. It is located in Central Western China on the edge of the Gobi Desert and feeds on the Yellow River which originates in the clean and natural Tibetan Plateau. With the aridity of the land and longer sunlight hours than normal during the growing season (about 3,000 - compared to Bordeaux's average of 2,052 hours), the berries are allowed to ripen fully, developing a full fruit character.
Ningxia extends over an area of 66,000 square kilometers. The main wine growing areas are located in the far north of the region, where the Yellow River provides sufficient irrigation water and the originally dry landscape has been transformed into fertile soil, ideally suited for wine production. Ningxia has a distinctly continental climate, with its eastern border located approximately 950 kilometers from the nearest sea. Summers are hot, but the high altitude of the vineyards, some even above 1200 meters above sea level, helps create a favorable climate for wine growing. At this altitude, intense sunlight during the day is followed by significantly cooler nights.
Different types of wines are produced in the area:
Red Wines: Red wines are dominant in Ningxia, and most wine producers in the region specialize in red varieties. The main grape varieties for red wines in Ningxia are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Gernischt (a cross between Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc) and Syrah. These grapes thrive in Ningxia's continental climate, with its hot summers and cool nights.
White wines: Although less prominent than red wines, white wines are also produced in Ningxia. Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling are some of the popular grape varieties used for white wine production. The region's cooler nights can contribute to the freshness and complexity of these wines.
Sparkling wines: Ningxia also has some wine producers that produce high quality sparkling wines. These sparkling wines can be either white or rosé and are often made using the traditional method, similar to Champagne.