Remarks by Ambassador William A. Heidt at the American Wine Promotion

Le Meridien Hotel, Siem Reap
June 13, 2017
(as delivered)

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen.  Thank you so much for joining us today for our America Day in Siem Reap Wine tasting event.

First, I would like to recognize and thank our distributors for being here today.  We have Hung Hiep, the exclusive distributor of Gallo Wines; IDD, which has just started distributing Brownstone wines; Celliers d’Asie, the distributor for Beringer, Fetzer, Bonterra, Gnarly Head, and Delicato; and the Warehouse, which has brought Freemark Abbey, Kendall Jackson and Le Crema.

This year, we decided to celebrate America Day in Siem Reap – a day-long series of events to showcase the strong and growing ties between the United States and Cambodia’s tourism capital of Siem Reap.  We’ve seen rapid development in this city’s hospitality industry, which has also translated to growing demand for American brands and products.

As the U.S. Ambassador, I am proud to see new American franchises, and more American products served at the fine hotels and restaurants in this town.  I hope that after this event, even more of you will buy and sell American wines.

Although the market share of American wines in Cambodia is still small, the distributors in this room should be congratulated for multiplying the variety and amount of American wines sold in Cambodia.   I hope this event can help demonstrate the great diversity and quality of wines from the United States.

Although I believe all of our wines here today are from the great state of California – the home state of our Deputy Chief of Mission, Julie Chung –  all 50 states now have American wines.  I would in particular recommend the very lovely and sweet Pink Catabwa variety from my home town of Erie, Pennsylvania.  Some day I hope it will also be available in Cambodia.

In the meantime, you will get the chance this afternoon to taste a wide range of American wines.  I hope all of you will fall in love with the wineries represented here and become American wine Ambassadors in Cambodia.

Thanks again for being here tonight. Please do try all the varietals here today and consider stocking them in your store, restaurant or hotel.  The next time I come back to Siem Reap, I’ll be checking to see for more American wines in stores and on the wine lists in this town!