As an ode to its successful five-year journey in the country, Chandon India announces the new ‘Think Pink’ bottle for its Rosé varietal in January 2019. The design of the India-themed bottle draws inspiration from some of the
country’s most recognisable symbols, especially the Peacock – also the national bird of India, along with other motifs derived from natural riches of the country – such as bejewelled antique jewellery, and stunning ancient architectural patterns.
The label plays with the soothing shades of blue of the majestic peacock – an epitome of poise, beauty and individualism. We can learn from it lessons about the meaning of self-love,honour, integrity and the importance of facing life’s challenges as well as the unknown with courage, confidence and grace. Meanwhile, the refined lotus pink in the bottle’s design, represents all that is precious. The two hues blend beautifully together in the bottle’s design to expertly embody the true spirit of Chandon Rosé. The ornate design also draws from other inspirations – delicate inlay work in Mughal architecture, embellished bejewelled ornamentation from traditional techniques such as jadau and polki, as well as one of India’s richest legacies – handwoven textiles.
Chandon’s ‘Think Pink’ bottle for its Rosé is the perfect pouring partner and is gender neutral, making it ideal for celebrations and for gift giving to celebrate love, self-expression and confidence and to get the party started!
Chandon’s ‘Think Pink’ bottle of rosé will be available at select retail outlets and on-premise at F&B partners from January 2019 onwards in markets that Chandon is present in. (Excerpt from a release)
Nashik vineyards have started entering a pre-harvest stage with ‘veraison’ arriving in Sula’s vineyards at Gangapur. Basically, ‘Veraison’ is one of the most important moments in a grapevine’s annual lifecycle; it’s the onset of ripening, when the grapes turn from green to red and naturally begin to sweeten. Signalling that the harvest is near wine grape growers across the district are reporting that their fruit has begun to change colours, a seasonal rite that signals the region’s 10 lakh metric tonne grape crop is quickly ripening and harvest is approaching. This French term also occurs in white grapes, but without the colour changes–white grapes simply become more translucent.
In Nashik, the regular grape harvest is expected to be a bumper one after a sort of slack observed last year. Wineries too are excited and Sula, the biggest winery in India based out of Nashik is planning to crush 15 to 20% more after the harvest this year. “To meet these targets, we have increased our cultivation by 400 acres from 2017 to 2018. A lot of existing farmers with Sula have expanded their cultivation and many more farmers have joined in,” explains Karan Vasani, Senior Vice-President for wine-making and production operations at Sula Vineyards.
Sanjeev Paithankar, Senior Vice-president of Public Affairs at Sula Vineyards says, “Since Sula controls almost 65 to 70% of the Indian wine market, what it does impacts the entire wine scenario of the country. We have a very clear domestic focus and about 500 grape growers are working with us today. This year we are hoping to crush 12,000 to 13,000 tonnes of grapes and cross our record-breaking sales figures of 2018 as well.”
In the year ending July 31, 2018 Sula Vineyards crossed the 1-million case sales mark. This is the first time that an Indian wine producer has achieved this important milestone. “We are planning to sell almost 1.2 million cases in 2019,” adds Paithankar.
Like the last two years, Sula is again expecting an early harvest while the full-fledged harvest process will begin from end of December. Sula has been taking considerate steps to adapt well to climatic changes and since 2016 has been pruning the vines earlier than usual which has resulted in an early harvest. 2016 saw the earliest grape harvest ever witnessed by the country and the same time-frame was continued in 2017 and now in 2018.
Wine grape-growers too are elated this year. Laxman Jadhav, a wine grape grower from Pimpalgoan informed that the size of the grape bunch is smaller this time which in fact is a good thing. “Unlike table grapes, the quality of wine grapes is defined by smaller grape bunches. The yield is also expected to be bumper. Sula not only gives farmers an assured income but it also handholds us throughout the process. I was growing vegetables before 2003 which was an unprofitable business, but since I joined the Sula contract farming circle, I have been able to live a better life,” said Jadhav.
Similarly, Sula’s efforts to educate the country about wine and propel wine tourism to where it is today is also bearing fruits. The number of visitors to Nashik’s vineyards has been increasing steadily. “We have seen a growth of 15% in the number visitors to our vineyards. Most of them are curious about wine-making and enjoy spending time with their family and friends in these lush locales. We get maximum visitors from Mumbai, Pune, Surat and Ahmedabad,” said Monit Dhavale, Senior Vice-president of Hospitality, Sula Vineyards. (Excerpt from a release)
India’s leading distributor of premium wines and spirits, Aspri Spirits and AB Celestial, Mumbai’s first luxury floatal hosted an exceptional wine evening with the oldest wine brand established in Bordeaux, Barton & Guestier.The elegant evening presented an opportunity to taste the wonderful diversity of fine French wines and learn more about the brand, region, appellation and its constant quality and style through Mr. Marcos Ignacio, Export Manager, Barton & Guestier. Barton & Guestier is the signature for French wines and is greatly recognised for its
character, knowledge and art of living, the core-values that guide their teams and build strong partnerships.
On the occasion, Mr. Marcos Ignacio said, “Everyone at Barton & Guestier is proud of the history and is driven by an unrelenting pioneering spirit based on winemaking expertise. The desire to bring you the best quality wine is unquestionably being perpetuated and events like these only bring us closer to our customers.”
Mr. Arun Kumar and Mr. Jackie Matai, Co Founders, Aspri Spirits also attended the evening with media, trade and friends.The wines that were savoured were Barton & Guestier Passeport Saint – Emilion, Barton & Guestier Passeport Cotes-du-Rhone, Baron & Guestier Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Barton & Guestier Reserve Merlot, Barton & Guestier Cuvee Speciale Rouge, Barton & Guestier Cuvee Speciale Blanc. ( Exceprt from a press release)
Aspri Spirits, India’s leading distributor of premium wines and spirits presented an exceptional wine evening to bring together wine lovers and connoisseurs to celebrate 150 years of Carpene Malvolti Prosecco. The evening, hosted at Out of the Blue, Khar, Mumbai, showcased the Carpene Malvolti Prosecco Special Cuvee Brut DOC, a light, fruity wine with scents of acacia flowers, wild strawberries and ripe golden apple.
Mr.Domenico Scimone, Global Sales and Marketing Director, Carpene Malvolti , an Italian Sommelier from the brand , presented the visitors a remarkable and enchanting understanding of the brand. He took the audience through the exciting journey of the brand by presenting the brand’s history, the process of making wines, details on their best wines and much more.
It was founded in 1868 by Antonio Carpenè, who dreamt to produce a bubbly wine with the grapes harvested from the hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene. This dream has become a mission: producing high quality sparkling
wine at each grape harvest, a dream that is still coming true today, day after day. Produced from grapes grown in the historic production areas of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene, it is an aromatic sparkling brut wine with an alcohol content of 11 degrees, produced with the Charmat or Martinotti method, elaborated for the first time by Antonio Carpene for the Prosecco grapes in 1868
Pricing: Delhi – Rs.2500/- Mumbai –Rs.2470/- Bangalore –Rs.1975/-
( Exceprt from a press release)
We The Happy High,one of India's leading wine and spirit education co have launched our own certified wine courses , the Wine 101 for beginners and the Wine Pro for the budding Sommelier.
"With 300 mn cases of beers and spirits each consumed annually in India, wine at a speculative 3 mn cases hardly makes a difference. However the latter is not just restricted to the high society now as the aspirational who because of their travels and general availability is also exposed to the drinks and are taking a liking to it. And this has prompted us to curate the Wine 101 for consumers or young hotel professionals and bespoke Wine Pro courses for hotels Pan- India" says Ajit Balgi, founder at The Happy High
The beginners courses are day long and cover basics of wine, including wine tasting, service temperatures, glassware, food and wine pairing. These courses are planned on a regular basis and come at RS 5500 + GST per head. The Happy High certified Wine Pro course is designed for 4 days and is customized for hotels based on their wine lists and the requirements of their wine program and have been implemented at a Marriott hotel and soon at a Taj property.
These wine courses will open the doors to the world of wine for you as a consumer and give you a perspective and connect for professionals who want to make a career in wine as a Sommelier or as a Brand ambassador. Kindly drop a line on email@example.com if you wish to organize a Wine 101 or a Wine Pro course exclusively for your Office, hotel or a hotel management institute.
Bira 91, one of the fastest growing craft beer brands, has entered into a major five-year deal with the International Cricket Council (ICC). The partnership, which runs through 2023, confirms Bira 91 as the official sponsor of - ICC global tournaments including the ICC Cricket World Cup, ICC T20 World Cup, ICC World Test Championship, ICC U19 Cricket World Cup and the ICC Women's World Cup.
This is the brand's first foray into sports. As an official partner, Bira 91 will integrate the partnership across broadcast and digital platforms, and in-venue activations at all ICC events through their range of products (beer including non-alcoholic beer and hot sauce).
Speaking of the partnership, Ankur Jain, Founder & CEO, Bira 91, said, "The ICC partnership is a key moment for Bira 91 as we embark on creating the first global consumer brand to come out of India. A generational 'change of guard' in beer is underway as consumers shift towards beers with more color and flavor. World cricket is undergoing a similar generational change as it expands to more dynamic formats, newer geographies and consumers. We are excited to be part of the 'greatest celebrations of cricket' on the international stage and adding consumer experience driven activations by our innovative and delicious beers."
ICC has 104 member countries and continues to expand its global footprint by reinventing the game with the vision of making it more relevant for new spectators. That outreach, including targeting women and young people, matches with Bira 91's ambition and core philosophy: "Imagined in India, for the new world." The brand aspires to drive a global shift in beer towards more flavor and color.
Commenting on the agreement, Campell Jamieson, ICC General Manager Commercial said, "As we started negotiating the agreement with Bira 91, the natural overlaps in their ambitions and ours became obvious. Cricket has more than one billion adult fans and is a natural partner for this ambitious brand. The ICC is delighted to welcome Bira 91 on-board as an official partner and into the world cricketing family, and we look forward to working together for the next five years to deliver a strong partnership at ICC global events."
Bira 91 grew five times in the last fiscal year (ending March 31, 2018) and has scaled to be comparable to the top 10 craft breweries in the US in terms of volume in only three years since inception. Besides India, the company has expanded internationally to the United States, Singapore, Hong Kong, UAE and Bahrain, with imminent expansion in the UK and Vietnam. The company expects to expand its production footprint five-fold to 2,000,000 barrels before summer of 2019 from the current capacity of 350,000 barrels.
With the global craft beer market projected to reach over $502B by 2025, and the market expected to witness substantial growth over the forecast period due to the rising demand for craft beers, Bira 91's growth comes at an opportune time to corner a rising market and reach emerging consumers.
One of Rhone Valley France's most iconic brands Chapoutier is now back in India after an insignificant first attempt. M. Chapoutier has been producing iconic wines from Rhône Valley since 1808 and holds the title for the most awarded wine maker and the record for a 100 point rating from Robert Parker 33 times with top ratings from all other major wine critics. They were most recently awarded the first “World’s Most Admired French Wine Brand” by Drinks International Report 2018.
Michel Chapoutier, a true visionary with a deep understanding of the terroir cultivates and harvests the vineyards organically and biodynamically to ensure the wines are the truest expression of the region. The first to introduce braille on their wine labels, this unique feature continues to distinguish their brand from other wines on the shelf. Their passion for wine making and the pride they carry for the Rhone Valley region have been recognised the world over. M. Chapoutier is the preferred French wine brand for worldwide travel retail and airlines like Air France, Emirates, Etihad and Air India to name a few. Today, M. Chapoutier also has vineyards in Australia, Portugal and Spain and exports to over 130 countries around the world. India is the latest addition to their growing global presence.
"Our vision is to offer new trends and the finest selection of Wine & Spirit brands to our discerning consumers across the Indian sub-continent. M. Chapoutier is an iconic and top awarded wine producer from France and we are thrilled to bring this historic brand to the Indian market. I do believe the majority of the popular grapes from the Rhône Valley region especially Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Grenache Blanc and Viognier offer a great affinity to Indian cuisine. We are confident that the quality and variety of our M. Chapoutier selection will find acceptance and appreciation from the wine lovers in India.” said Sumedh Singh Mandla (CEO – VBev)
Edouard Payot the Export Director of the brand who flew in for the occasion to introduce the portfolio to the Indian audience seemed positive and said, “Maison Chapoutier is very excited to start working with VBev for the Indian market and to launch our famous Rhône Valley wines in the market. India is a fast-growing and developing country with more and more wine being imported every year and we sincerely hope to convince the Indian consumers with our terroir-driven and elegant wines. It’s a priority of development for the group Chapoutier and we’re confident that we’ll find our place in this competitive market due to the professionalism of our new partner and the indisputable quality of our wines.” says Edouard Payot
Following wines were Showcased:
Le Bernardine Chateauneuf-Du-Pape 2015
Les Meysonniers Crozes Hermitage 2016
Bila-Haut Cotes Du Roussillion Villages 2017 - MRP 2190
Belleruche, Cotes Du Rhone , Blanc and Rouge - MRP 2590
( Excerpt from a release)
Taj Lands End, Mumbai added yet another jewel in its repertoire of culinary offerings with the re-launch of the Atrium Lounge in a brand new avatar. The launch marked by a grand event that witnessed the magnificent revival of this exceptional offering and evolved into a soiree with Mumbai’s crème de la crème, celebrating. Gracing the event was Mr. Puneet Chhatwal – Managing Director & CEO, Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL), along with other eminent personalities such as Brian Lara, Mukesh Bhatt, Talat and Bina Aziz, Nisha JamVwal and celebrated personalities including Neha Dhupia and Angad Bedi, Dino Morea, Isha Koppikar, Suchitra Pillai-Malik, Kim Sharma, Harshvardhan Rane and Neha Sharma.
Located at the heart of the hotel, the effervescent Atrium Bar & Lounge offers a welcoming retreat from the bustling city life. With a wide selection of first flush teas and single origin coffees along with the signature smoothies, the Atrium Bar & Lounge offers every reason to sit back and relax while the sun sets over Bandra’s charming seascape. For aficionados, eager to experience the finest, Atrium offers the largest selection of whiskeys and spirits from across the world accompanied by iconic concoctions distinctive to the Golden Age. Reminiscent of Mumbai’s dynamic culture, the Atrium Bar & Lounge invites guests to experience the city on their plates. From aromatic street-food to the suave palate of world-cuisine, the menu boasts of a distinct mélange of local and international flavours.
The evening came alive to the sound of music and displayed magical performances by renowned artists like Manasi Scott and Keya Pothen coupled with a euphoric camaraderie of the subtle notes of violin and cello. Commenting on the momentous occasion, Mr. Parveen Chander Kumar, Area Director – West and General Manager – Taj Lands End said, “We are delighted to reintroduce our signature bar & lounge, known for its tranquil ambience and delectable culinary experiences. The new avatar encompasses a truly sensational experience in terms of service, décor and flavours. We look forward to our guests partaking in this brand new journey of the Atrium Bar & Lounge .” ( Excerpt from a press release)
Helmed by Gargi Kothari, Rojita Tiwari and Ruchika Agarwal D’souza; Agents of Cheer is India’s only curated Drinks Festival, which provides an opportunity to wine and spirits enthusiasts to taste, explore and savour the world of drinks in a fun and intimate way. The festival has been conceptualized and curated with the objective of offering drink lovers an experience that is unique, exciting and entertaining.
The first in the series, Agents of Cheer Vol 1 was held in January 2018 and was a resounding success. The appreciation sessions on wines and spirits, conducted by their expert team members offered the perfect opportunity to learn many intrinsic aspects of both the drinks. The walk-around tastings (40 premium wines and spirits) offered a perfect set-up for the guests to mingle around and savour a wide variety of handpicked wines and spirits while enjoying a live-band performance. Artisanal cheeses, cigars and, art showcases added an extra oomph to the overall experience.
With the promise and vision to make Agents of Cheer the most unique, informative and fun event for the discerning consumers and trade, Agents of Cheer Vol 2 washeld on 6th October 2018 at the beautiful setting of Mabruk and Oceans in Hotel Sahara Star, Mumbai. The event entailed two in-depth appreciation sessions followed by a walk-around tasting. The appreciation session - Understanding Specific Origin Wines - will be conducted by Gargi Kothari, a wine geek and the founder of Magic Cellars, a company that curates wine experiences. The Spirits Studio session - Learning To Appreciate Gin - will be conducted by Rojita Tiwari, India’s leading beverage professional, wine & spirits journalist and founder of Drinks and Destinations.
The Spirits Studio saw premium brands from Bacardi India’s portfolio along with a new spirits category, a Chinese spirit - Baijiu brand called Jiangxiaobai which has entered India and was presented to the consumers for the first time. Baijiu means “white alcohol” with a strong flavour, which is distilled from fermented sorghum.
A classy affair had live music performances, stalls showcasing fashion accessories, apparel, works of art, and a delicious line up of appetizers and bar bites as a perfect accompaniment to the wines and spirits.
( Excerpt from a release)
The winners of the 2018 India Wine Awards were revealed in a sparkling black-tie event attended by all the luminaries of the wine and hospitality world at The Leela, Mumbai.
The dazzling award ceremony, presented by whisky wizard and media personality Anish Trivedi, saw 184 medals in Silver, Gold and Diamond awarded to domestic and international wines,including 30 Best in Class Trophies for outstanding wines in the competition results. The popular Best Wine Pairings with Indian Cuisine category had 10 Trophy Winners emerge from 120 wines,paired with nine dishes such as chicken chettinad and mutton rahra.
Raising the bar as the country’s most authoritative wine awards, a special category of Excellence in Restaurant Wine Programs at Hotels and Premium Stand-Alone Restaurants located in the three major consumption centers of Mumbai, Delhi-NCR and Bangalore recognised 20 restaurants for a World Class Wine List, 8 restaurants as World Class Wine Destinations and a further 6 restaurants for the best Wine-Trained Service staff.
The India Wine Awards, led by the most qualified and foremost wine professionals in India and abroad, is an initiative powered by Sonal Holland, India's first Master of Wine and Founder-Director of SoHo Wine Club. Wines entered in the competition were judged over two days a panel chaired by Sonal Holland, comprising 18 distinguished wine and food experts including Ajit Balgi from The Happy High.
To build a strong foundation for Excellence in Restaurant Wine Programs at Hotels and Premium Stand-Alone Restaurants, for the first time in any Indian wine competition an independent panel of five international Master of Wines, including Sonal Holland, was formed to bring their global experience and unmatched expertise to the judging process. The panelists included:
• Richard Hemming MW (United Kingdom): London-based wine-writer, educator and Consultant
• Ying Hsien Tan MW (Singapore): Singapore’s first Master of Wine and owner of the Taberna Wine Academy
• Andrea Pritzker MW (Australia): Sydney-based independent wine consultant, WSET educator, writer and a public speaker
• Victoria Burt MW (United Kingdom): Research & Development Manager at the Wine & Spirits Education Trust.
“Receiving a massive 353 nominations, the India Wine Awards has established itself as the country’s apex wine
competition, built on the four pillars of integrity, authenticity, credibility and relevance. It is our commitment to develop India’s wine industry, rewarding excellence. The 2018 India Wine Awards showcases the depth and versatility of Indian wines to the globe, while offering a platform for international labels to reach out to the domestic market. For the urban Indian, wine is a cultural disruptor. Wine has sparked more conversations beyond
what we could have ever imagined. Serving as the ultimate consumer guide, the India Wine Awards helps wine consumers navigate a labyrinth of seemingly impossible choices, to select the perfect wine for the occasion." said Sonal.
The award ceremony end with some lip-smacking class food from the Leela, Mumbai as they brought in they brought the best out from their restaurants namely Jamavar, Great Wall and their uber luxurious fine dine , the Le Cirque which also won an award that evening.
Check the award winners for India Wine Awards 2018 here
( Excerpt from a release)
Chêne Grande Réserve 2015, India Grover Zampa Soirée Brut Rosé 2015, India Sula Dindori Viognier 2018, India Reveilo Nero d'Avola 2017, India SDU RESERVA 2014, India Le Volte dell’Ornellaia 2015, Italy Taittinger Les Folies de la Marquetterie NV, France Joseph Drouhin 'Drouhin-Vaudon' Chablis Reserve de Vaudon 2015, France Torres Mas La Plana 2012, Spain Boscoselvo Brunello di Montalcino 2010, Italy Susana Balbo CRIOS Torrentes 2017, Argentin Zonin, Ripasso Valpolicella Superiore DOC, Italy Framigham Pinot Noir 2015, New Zealand Domaines Barons De Rothschild Réserve Spéciale Pauillac, Franc
Masi Masianco Pinot Grigio 2016, Italy Erasmo Barbera Garnacha, Chile Chateau d'Esclans Côtes de Provence Whispering Angel Rosé, France Masi Campofiorin Rosso del Veronese 2014, Italy Marchesi Antinori Castello della Sala 'Bramito del Cervo' 2016, Italy Cavino Naousa Xinomavro 2015, Greece Cavino Nemea Agiorgitiko 2015, Greece Four Seasons Vintners Reserve Red Wine 2015, India Fratelli SETTE 2015, India Fratelli MS Rosé 2017, India Fratelli MS Red 2017, India Fratelli Sauvignon Blanc 2018, India Fratelli Chenin Blanc 2018, India Fratelli Sangiovese 2017, India Good Earth Bleu NV, India,Good Earth Antaraa NV, India Good Earth Basso NV, India Vijay Amritraj Reserve Collection White 2017, India Vijay Amritraj Reserve Collection Red 2015, India Grover Zampa Art Collection Viognier 2018, India Grover Zampa Art Collection Sauvignon Blanc 2018, India Grover Zampa Soirée Brut Magnifique 2016 , India La Réserve Red 2016, India Sensi Campoluce, Chianti DOCG (Organic) 2016 , Italy Sensi Collezione Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2016, Italy Sensi Collezione Nero d'Avola IGT Sicily 2015, Italy Sensi Collezione Chianti DOCG 2016, Italy Faustino I Gran Reserva Rioja DOCa 2015, Spain Bodegas Faustino VII Rioja DOCa 2015, Spain Paul Jaboulet Aîné, Les Traverses, Ventoux AOC 2016 , France Bodegas Portia Roble, Ribera del Duero 2016, Spain Château Goumin Blanc 2015, France KRSMA Estates Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, India KRSMA Estates Sauvignon Blanc 2017, India Besserat de Bellefon Grande Tradition Brut , France Campo Viejo Tempranillo 2017, Spain Brancott Estate Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2017, New Zealand Sileni Cellar Selection Sauvignon Blanc 2015, Italy De Bortoli Noble One 2013, Australia Reveilo Sangiovese 2017, India Reveilo Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, India SDU DEVA Chenin Blanc NV, India SDU Trilogy 2014 , India SDU Deva Syrah 2014, India Soma Vineyards Rosé Gold 2018, India Sula Rasa Cabernet 2016, India Sula Brut Chardonnay, India Sula Chenin Blanc Late Harvest 2018, India Sula Chenin Blanc Reserve 2017, India Sula Sauvignon Blanc 2018 , India Sula Zinfandel Rosé 2018 , India Sula Rasa Shiraz 2016, India Sula Dindori Reserve Shiraz 2017, India Kadu Sauvignon Blanc 2018, India Kadu Chenin Blanc 2018, India Kadu Cabernet Shiraz 2017 , India Bouchard Aîné & Fils Chablis A.O.C., France Bouchard Aîné & Fils Bourgogne Chardonnay A.O.C., France Ferrari Brut NV, Italy Tenuta Sant Antonio Scaia Red 2015, Italy Dog Point Section 94 Sauvignon Blanc, New Zealand Thelema Shiraz 2014, South Africa,York All Rounder White 2017, India York Rosé 2018, India
SILVER AWARD WINNERS
Barton & Guestier Reserve Merlot, France Concha Y Toro Casillero del Diablo Reserva Chardonnay, Chile Nederburg The Winemaster's Reserve Sauvignon Blanc, South Africa Freixenet Cordon Negro Brut Cava, Spain Donnafugata, Sedàra IGT Sicilia Nero d'Avola, Italy Carpene Malvolti Prosecco DOC Treviso Brut, Italy Pampas del Sur 'Select' Shiraz Malbec, Argentina Peter Lehmann Portrait Eden Valley Riesling 2016, Australia Doña Paula Malbec 2017, Argentina Peter Lehmann The Barossan Shiraz 2016, Australia Masi Levaire Soave Classico 2016, Italy Selbach Riesling 2016, Germany Maison du Sud Merlot 2016 , France Maison du Sud Sauvignon Blanc 2016, France Brancott Estate Pinot Noir 2017, New Zealand Jacob's Creek Reserve Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2017, Australia Cape Dreams Pinotage 2016, South Africa Four Seasons Chenin Blanc 2018, India Four Seasons Blush 2018, India Four Seasons Shiraz 2017, India Fratelli Cabernet Franc – Shiraz, India Fratelli MS White 2017, India Fratelli NOI, India Fratelli Chardonnay 2018, India Fratelli Cabernet Sauvignon 2018, India Fratelli Classic Chenin, India Fratelli Classic Shiraz, India Fratelli Classic Merlot, India Casablanca Rosé Spumanté NV, India Casablanca Frizzano Semi Dry NV, India Casablanca Frizzano Extra Dry NV, India Casablanca Vino Spumanté, India Grover Soirée Brut, India Grover Art Collection Shiraz Rosé 2018, India Grover Art Collection Chenin Blanc 2017, India Grover Art Collection Cabernet Shiraz 2017, India Sensi Prosecco Pure 18K Gold Brut 2017, Italy Vintales Bloomin’ Late Muscat 2017, South Africa Vintales Last Call Shiraz 2017, South Africa Sensi Collezione Merlot, Toscana IGT 2016, Italy Sensi Collezione Pinot Grigio, Veneto IGT 2016, Italy Sensi Collezione Vermentino, Toscana IGT 2016, Italy Chateau Bonnet, Entre Deux Mers AOC 2015, France Chateau Goumin, Bordeaux Rouge AOC 2015, France Sensi Pinot Noir Rosé Pure 18K Gold Brut NV, Italy Sensi Collezione Pinot Noir Veneto IGT 2016, Italy, Paul Jaboulet Aîné Syrah 2015, France Campo Viejo Blanco 2017, Spain Sileni Estates Cellar Selection Pinot Noir, New Zealand Reveilo Chardonnay Reserve 2016, India Reveilo Late Harvest Chenin Blanc 2016, India SDU Deva Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, India SDU Winemakers Selection 2014, India Soma Vineyards Zinfandel Red Reserve 2017, India Soma Vineyards Shiraz Reserve 2018, India Soma Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc Gold 2018, India Soma Vineyards Rosé Dessert 2018, India Soma Vineyards Shiraz Cabernet Silver 2018, India The Source Grenache Rosé, India Sula Brut NV, India Sula Brut Rosé NV, India Sula Cabernet Shiraz 2017, India Sula Zinfandel 2018, India Sula Chenin Blanc 2018, India Sula Riesling 2017, India Sula Brut Rosé, India Trapiche Old Cask Malbec, Argentina Mud House Sauvignon Blanc, New Zealand Le Grand Noir GSM, France Conti Serristori Chianti Classico DOCG, Italy, Cap Royal Bordeaux Supérieur, France Nik Weis St Urbans-Hof QbA Riesling 2016, Germany The Daily Dose Sauvignon Blanc 2017, India Saint Clair Pinot Noir, New Zealand York All Rounder Red 2017, India York Shiraz Viognier 2017, India
WINE LIST AWARDS
ONE STAR AWARD
1. Rivers to Oceans, Mumbai
2. The Table, Mumbai
3. The Wine Rack, Mumbai
4. San:Qi, Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai
5. Kebabs and Kurries, ITC Grand Central Mumbai
6. Romano’s, JW Marriott Mumbai Sahar
7. Fratelli Fresh, Renaissance Mumbai
8. Artisan – French Bistro, Sofitel Mumbai BKC
9. Le Cirque Signature, The Leela Mumbai
10. Luna, The St. Regis Mumbai
11. Caprese, Shangri-La Hotel Bengaluru
12. Le Cirque Signature, The Leela Palace Bengaluru
13. Le Jardin, The Oberoi Bengaluru
14. The Wine Company, Gurugram
15. The Hong Kong Club, Andaz Delhi
16. Dum Pukht, ITC Maurya New Delhi
17. Pluck, Hotel Pullman New Delhi Aerocity
Two Star Awards
The Chambers, The Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai
2. Wasabi by Morimoto, The Taj Mahal Hotel New Delhi
3. Le Cirque, The Leela Palace New Delhi
WINE DESTINATION AWARD
1. The Wine Rack, Mumbai
2. Romano’s, JW Marriott Mumbai Sahar
3. Le Cirque Signature, The Leela Mumbai
4. Toscano, Bengaluru
5. Caprese, Shangri-La Hotel Bengaluru
6. Le Jardin, The Oberoi Bengaluru
7. Qla, New Delhi
8. Le Cirque, The Leela Palace New Delhi
WINE-TRAINED STAFF AWARD
1. The Table, Mumbai
2. San:Qi, Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai
3. Dum Pukht, ITC Maratha Mumbai
4. Dublin, ITC Windsor Bengaluru
5. The Wine Company, Gurugram
6. Honk, Hotel Pullman New Delhi Aerocity
From 11–15 March 2019 all eyes will be on Antwerp, where the prestigious world championship competition of the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale (A.S.I.) will be held. Sixty-five sommeliers from sixty-two countries will vie for the crown of the worldwide brotherhood/sisterhood of sommeliers/sommelières at the fiftieth anniversary edition of the sommelier Olympics. And who will be there leading the way? Wines from Austria.
International top sommeliers focus on Austrian wine As a longstanding partner of the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale – of which the Austrian Sommelier Union has been a member since 1988 – the Austrian Wine Marketing Board (AWMB) has been granted the unique opportunity to participate – along with Inter Rhône – as a platinum sponsor. This means that a wide range of Austrian wines from all of the winegrowing regions will be presented to the competing top sommeliers and the attending international journalists during the tournament from 11–15 March. At every lunch and every dinner – all the way up to the gala feast after
the grand finale – and at the conclusion of every day in the ‘bar des sommeliers’, as well as in two master classes for the sommeliers and members of the trade.
For five days, Austrian wines will be able to shine on the stage of the world’s finest sommeliers and before the avid eyes of international wine journalists – which is sure to heighten interest in the small wine-land and its great wines.
Return to Belgium after fifty years The A.S.I. was founded in 1969 with the objective of helping sommeliers all over the world to reach new levels of achievement in their profession. That same year, the very first Concours de Meilleur Sommelier du Monde was held in Brussels. Fifty years later, the sommelier world championship – held only once every three years – returns to Belgium, where the highly coveted title ‘A.S.I. Best Sommelier of the World’ will beconferred upon the victor.
Great media interest in the title match There will be sixty-five top-drawer international sommeliers competing, who must already have emerged victorious from elimination rounds in their own countries, in a five-day marathon of tastings. Among the contestants will be Austria’s top sommelier, who will be named on 5 November at the ‘Best Sommelier of Austria 2018’ competition. The world championship programme will feature several written tests of knowledge and blind tastings, as well as examinations in facets of wine service and awareness of the international wine market. At the finale on 15 March in Antwerp’s ‘Konigin Elizabethzaal’, the final three candidates must ultimately prove their capabilities in front of some 2,000 attendees.
( Excerpt from a press release)
Celebrating the global success of the Vijay Amritraj Reserve Collection, Grover Zampa Vineyards along with the legend Mr. Vijay Amritraj, hosted an experiential evening over fine wines and conversations at Skydeck, Shangri-La Bangalore on 6th September, 2018. The event, full of fine wines, conversations and delectable meals prepared by the talented chefs at Shangri-La, witnessed socialites, wine aficionados and industry stalwarts who gathered to honor the various achievements earned by the VA collection.
“It has been my utmost pleasure being associated with Grover Zampa Vineyards, witnessing the rising recognition received by the brand in India and overseas. With the growing appreciation for the collection, we are positive about the winning streak to continue with a lot more accolades flowing in.” said Amritraj, Ranked among India’s finest wines, the Vijay Amritraj Reserve Collection, launched in 2014 in London, marks a distinctive association between sports and wine. The wines, a perfect mélange of inimitable diversity and smoothness, have earned worldwide recognition with 22 distinguishable awards. The most recent recognition garnered by the collection was the gold medal bagged by the red variant at the much-acclaimed Asian Wine Review 2018 in Hong Kong. The review also conferred Grover Zampa Vineyards the Best Asian Winery. While the brand is already internationally available in USA, UK, Australia, Japan, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Singapore; it was recently launched in Dubai earlier this year.
Vivek Chandramohan, CEO, Grover Zampa Vineyards opined, “It has been a matter of great pride to have associated with Mr. Vijay Amritraj to co-create and produce some of the finest wines that are representative of the Indian terroir. The accolades bestowed upon the collection over the years are a testament of the immense passion and dedication invested in their production. We are committed to providing our patrons with the best experiences always.”
( Excerpt from a press release)
Aspri Spirits, leading importers and distributors of some of the finest brands in the world of Wines and Spirits, recently launched the American Craft Vodka brand, Tito’s Handmade Vodka in India. Today, they celebrated the launch by hosting John McDonnell, Managing Director International, Fifth Generation, Inc., Home of Tito’s Handmade Vodka.
This exclusive evening was for Trade and Industry partners, Media, Bloggers and Celebrities. The launch was co-hosted by designer Rocky S at his baroque-style bar Rocky S Cocktail Bar. The guests were seen enjoying the ambience while savoring the signature cocktails that were specially curated for the evening like: Tito’s American Mule, Tito’s All Time Favourite, Tito’s Lemonade and Tea and a few others.
Discussing the plan for Tito’s Handmade Vodka in India John McDonnell said “India is a diverse market and with the Indian audience evolving and discovering global tastes and trends, we are positive that the brand will be loved and accepted by the Indian consumers”.
Jackie Matai and Arun Kumar Co-founders, Aspri Spirits said “We are excited to have partnered with Tito’s Handmade Vodka and are confident that the Indian consumer will patronize Tito’s”.
The guests enjoyed the soft, smooth and crisp finish of Tito’s Handmade Vodka, which is made using Corn and undergoes distillation six times in Pot Stills. Distilling from Corn makes the Vodka naturally Gluten - Free. The water that Tito’s uses is locally sourced and much of it is naturally filtered through limestone.
Tito’s is priced at Rs 3650 in Mumbai, Rs 3550 in Delhi and Rs 4500 in Bangalore. Titos’s is already available at all major Duty Free shops at airports in India such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai and others.
(Excerpt from a press release)
What to expect of 2018 vintage Austrian wines?
(Excerpt from a press release)
William Grant & Sons, the 130 year-old family run Scottish distiller, today announced a deal with Modi Distilleries Limited to bottle and launch Grant’s Blended Scotch whisky in India.
Under the terms of the deal, Grant’s Scotch Whisky will be shipped in bulk from Scotland to Modi’s distillery at Modinagar in Uttar Pradesh, where it will be bottled and packaged before being sold nationwide. The brand will initially be sold from September in Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra, Telengana, Goa, Karnataka and Maharastra.
According to IWSR global forecasts, India is expected to be one of the largest contributors to global whisky growth over the next 5 years. The Blended Scotch market in India is expected to grow to 5 million cases by 2021. Currently the scale of the market for Scotch brands bottled in India is ten times larger than those bottled in Scotland and imported.
James Pennefather, Managing Director William Grant & Sons India Pvt Ltd, said “This marks an important next phase of William Grant & Sons’ India market entry strategy. Having already established a successful portfolio of imported premium spirits such as Glenfiddich, Monkey Shoulder and Hendricks Gin in India, we decided that this is the right time to enter local production in the market. It is the first time that William Grant & Sons has entered local production in India, so we are delighted to be partnering for this with an established local family business, Modi Distilleries.”
Abhishek Modi, Executive Director Modi Distilleries Limited, said “This association with William Grant & Sons is a natural fit for our Company, since we have already established our quality credentials with brands such as Rockford Reserve and Artic Vodka. We look forward to working with William Grant & Sons to bring its leading international brand Grant’s Blended Scotch whisky to a new audience.”
(excerpt from a press release)
Aspri Spirits, India’s leading distributor of premium wines and spirits, hosted a special evening to bring together Campari lovers to celebrate Negroni Week at the Italian restaurant CinCin, BKC. The week-long international charity event is being hosted in bars and restaurants across the world to raise money for charitable causes.
Guests started with a Classic Negroni which is the 2nd Best Selling Cocktail in the world moving on to the other offerings at the event. The guests included India’s favourite female bartender Shatbhi Basu, Bollywood Makeup Artist Clint Fernandes and Sandhya Shetty, Model, Actor & Commonwealth Karate Gold Medal Winner amongst many other known faces from the industry.
Joining the movement, Mr. Jackie Matai, Co-founder, Aspri Spirits said, “We started hosting Negroni Week in India since 2015 and have continued to progress. This year, we have 103 bars participating across the country and have also rank 2nd in Asia. With the modern cocktail movement continuing to expand, the annual event has grown larger every year, with Negroni Week 2018 set to be the biggest yet. Starting with 100 participating bars in 2013, last year’s Negroni Week welcomed the involvement of 7,770 venues in 60 countries to raise a phenomenal $1.5 million for charitable causes since the launch. This year India alone has over 103 bars hosting the charitable event.
RECIPE FOR CLASSIC NEGRONI
As a globally consumed classic cocktail, the prestigious IBA Official Drink List states Campari is the key defining ingredient.
After being under development for a couple years, we are proud to officially announce the launch of the York Shiraz Viognier 2017. The York Shiraz Viognier is a new world style wine inspired from the blend commonly made in Cote Rotie in the Northern Rhone Valley. The two grape varieties have been co-fermented together along with the skins for 15 days to achieve flavour integration from the beginning of the process. Post alcoholic and malolactic fermentation, the wine has been aged in French oak for 6 months to supplement the varietal fruit characters and structure of the wine.
The blend of the two varieties is 90% Shiraz & 10% Viognier. The floral, spicy & peach flavours that are natural to the Viognier grape add a new dimension to the powerful & peppery Shiraz especially when fermented together. Apart from being an enjoyable drink on its own, this wine is particularly suited to Indian food.
This wine is priced at an MRP of Rs.750 in Maharashtra & Delhi. It will first be available at the Tasting Room at York Winery followed by release in rest of Maharashtra & Delhi in the coming month.
(Excerpt from a release)
A spirited soiree at The Leela Mumbai saw the launch of two iconic brands from the same distillery tucked away in the islands of Scotland. The single malt Bruichladdich Classic; an unpeated outlier from the land and the Botanist a dry gin flavoured with 22 botanicals were launched by famed Mixologist Yangdup Lama in the presence of whisky lovers and specialists from the beverages industry.
Bruichladdich the outlier also shows its wild side with the Octomore ,a 160 ppm peat monster but is yet to launch in the country. The non-chill filtered malt was best enjoyed with a few drops of water and went well with the range of appetizers showcased by the hotel. The evening started with G&T's and sushis and ended with old-fashioned, drams of the laddie and chocolates.
The Bruichladdich and the Botanist are imported and distributed by Sula Selections the import arm of Sula are now available in Maharashtra
The iconic Goan beer King's now owned by Sachin Joshi's Viiking Ventures has now launched the strong variant King's Maxx and would be available across Goa and Maharashtra very soon, with the rest of the states not too far. Being brewed in Goa, the beer holds a signature taste and has been a preferred choice for the beer lovers. Just last year, the group won the prestigious ‘Iconic Brands Of India’ award for Goa King’s Premium Pilsner and they intend to emulate the same success with their new SKU - MaXX
( Excerpt from a release)
BACARDÍ launched BACARDÍ House Party Sessions this year to bring to the world tomorrow’s musical sensations. Unlike most recording labels, BACARDÍ House Party Sessions offers a partnership that will foster each artists’ growth by providing them the right mentorship and opportunities coupled with provision of dedicated time to work on their future tracks and albums with dedicated studio time. The first leg of the BACARDI House Party Sessions campaign witnessed the announcement of its winner’s (RITVIZ, MojoJojo and Aarya) huge success with the launch of the first track UDD GAYE by RITVIZ which garnered over 3 million views and is the 4th trending track across all genres on Apple Music, after topping the charts.
After the massive success of the first BACARDÍ house party anthem ‘UDD GAYE’, BACARDÍ House Party Sessions brings you the next epic track - Chak Bass (https://youtu.be/71yeChlLjrE) by MojoJojo. Known for his distinctive brand of crossover music and fine handlebar moustache, MojoJojo aka Akshay Johar, is one of the four winners of the BACARDÍ House Party Sessions hosted by All India Bakchod (AIB) and Nucleya and this is the second music video release of the Sessions campaign.The fun and peppy track depicts a scenario in a rundown warehouse in a typical Mumbai setting where a high stakes carom championship is underway but events take a surprising turn.
Commenting on the Sessions campaign, Mr Anshuman Goenka, Marketing Head, BACARDÍ India says, “We are ecstatic looking at the overwhelming response that RITVIZ’s work has witnessed. UDD GAYE has become a sensation all over and this is the kind of leap that we aim to provide to our artists. Taking a step further in the direction, we are extremely excited to announce the launch of the second track- Chak Bass by MojoJojo. We are sure that this track will be equally loved by our audience and get us closer to our goal of bringing on board the right mix of experiences and opportunities to take the house party culture a notch higher in the music space. As a constant endeavour, we will continue to discover more such talented artists and help them along their journey. We have been globally known to foster talent and would like to reiterate our commitment to the world of music through BACARDÍ House Party Sessions.”
(Excerpt from a release)
Folonari wines from the house of Gruppo Italiano Vini were showcased over a relaxed lunch in Bandra. Mr Maurizio Bertacchini their Asia rep who was on the Indian market visit waxed eloquent about the wines and said,
"Folonari was started in 1825 and the focus was always to make some good quality wine at an affordable price" . The Pinot Grigio was refreshing and was a good start to the Sunday brunch. The Valpolicella and Pinot held forts and showed good value at their price points.
Rikshit Parsan of Ace Beveragez the importer of Folonari ensured the glasses were full at all times and the afternoon extended into early evening!
(Excerpt from a release)
Austrian wines are not very known in India, the reasons are many however once you get a taste of Austrian wines, you wouldn't get enough. Recently Michael Moosbrugger of the iconic wine house Schloss Gobelsburg was in Mumbai to enthrall a select group on the wines from their estate.
Schloss Gobelsburg is the oldest winery in the Austrian Danube area with a documented history back to the 12th century. Since its establishment the winery has been one of the leading producers in the region and throughout Austria. Located in the Danube area 45 min west of Vienna, the winery’s most important varieties are Grüner Veltliner and Riesling. The estate was run by monks till 1994 before it was taken over by the Moosbruggers in 1996 and since then winery has grown manifolds. Michael who introduced the 'Dynamic celllar' or the 'cellar on wheels' concept was awarded by the Austrian Fine Wine Magazine ‘Falstaff’ ‘Winemaker of the year 2006’, In 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014 the winery was awarded by the American ‘Wine & Spirits’ magazine as ‘Top 100 Winery of the year’.
The wines brought to India by Aspri Spirits showcased that evening included Domaine Gobelsburg Kamptal Gruner Veltliner, Schloss Gobelsburg Zweigelt and Schloss Gobelsburg Riesling. The evening was delightful with beautiful wines and conversations with Michael Moosbrugger.
The 10th of December, 2017 will the first ever International Aszú Day. Tokaj Aszú one of the greatest sweet wines of the world comes from the Tokaj wine region is situated in North East Hungary at the foothills of the Zemplén
Mountains, along the rivers Bodrog and Tisza; the world’s first delimited wine region since 1737.
How is the sweet wine made?
Thanks to the special microclimate of the wine region the onset of Botrytis cinerea or noble rot responsible for the shrivelling of berries is an almost certain occurrence each year though admittedly with varying degrees of intensity.Once the liquid matter has evaporated the aszú berries are macerated in the fermenting juice or base wine of the same vintage for 24-48 hours with regular stirring for proper extraction. Once the maceration is done the aszú paste is removed, pressed and the resulting must is fermented to arrive at Tokaj Aszú. Post-fermentation residual sugar content must reach at least 120 gram/liter. Properly stored Tokaj Aszús can be enjoyed for several decades. A properly stored 20 year old Aszú is still magnificent with slightly transformed flavours, added complexity; it’s easy to see why they are so highly regarded by connoisseurs. However tasting younger Aszús with their more springlike, fresher and brighter profile provides just as much pleasure.
Daniel Kezdy , the Man!
The idea of the International Aszú Day came from Dániel Kézdy, an avid fan and great expert of Tokaj. Mr. Kézdy has published a book on the wine region in 2014 with the title Tokaj – People and Vineyards which is available both in Hungarian and English. He was also the initiator and organizer of Furmint Február an annual event since 2010, and Hárslevelűk Éjszakája since 2014. The two events are designed to highlight these important Hungarian varieties. It was also Mr. Kézdy who came up with the idea of the International Furmint Day to be celebrated on the 1st of February.
"Tokaj wines have been the focus of my interest for 15 years now, I have tasted them alongside their major international rivals and Tokaj Aszús have always been among the leaders of the pack often finishing head and shoulders above the rest. If one takes a closer look at the often neglected category of sweet wines then to my mind there can only be one outcome as far as the winner is concerned. You might say I am biased but I am convinced
that it would be a hell of a task to refute me, so I’m not afraid to declare that Tokaj Aszú is the greatest sweet wine in the world and it deserves to be put in the limelight worldwide”, says Kézdy.
( Excerpt from a press release)