Wine is a recent phenomenon in India, so most people forget that some wines have been around for a fairly long time: Indage since 1986, Grover since 1992 and Sula (which is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its first harvest) since 1999. Time was when the only “wines” available were either the port-style stuff from Goa (remember “Adega de Velha”?) or Golconda. In 1986 Indage launched “Marquise de Pompadour” — touted as the first “Indian champagne” (we really didn’t know much about wine back then, did we?).
Read Sommelier India contributor, Alok Chandra’s piece in Business Standard about a year in wine. It makes for reflective reading. He also highlights how the sharp increase in volume for Sula hasn’t affected its quality as three of the five Indian wines at the Sommelier India Wine Competitino (SIWC) which received silver medals were from Sula (the Sauvignon Blanc, Dindori Reserve Shiraz, and Riesling).
What’s apparent as you read his piece is that so much has changed in the Indian wine scene in just a matter of twelve months. There’s a new market leader, the old stalwart of the industry is hurting and wine clubs are popping up everywhere. The Sommelier India Wine Competition launched to much success and the taxation issues got more complex. Without doubt though, the year ends with the Indian wine consumer winning as he’s drinking more, getting better wine to taste and is being expertly guided by the likes of this magazine on what to drink and where.
Alok Chandra’s piece can be found here.