Linking Indian wine with food
Wine in India has gained tremendous popularity in the last few years. People are writing about it, finding out more about it, understanding the many varietals wine has, and are discovering more and more ways of enjoying this beverage, writes Shreya Chauhan. Left: Chef Saby puts the finishing touches on a dish to be served with wine
We have had grape stomping events to get people to join in the fun of harvest festivals, tasting events to simplify the complex issues of the nose and palate between the numerous aromas and flavours this beverage has to offer. Organized cheese and wine parties to help people acquire the taste of wine and food.
India has no culture of serving wine with food whereas in Europe and many other countries that is the tradition where they generally serve different with each course to best enjoy both their food and wine.
Although a late entrant, India today has many wines of its own to offer, produced from grapes which are grown here. Some of these wines have won Indian and international accolades, Four Seasons being one of them. The wines are rich, light or full-bodied, depending on the varietal and pair well with both Indian and continental cuisine.
Four Seasons Wine has recently undertaken to organize events in different cities to showcase the art of pairing food with wines, highlighting how the taste of different ingredients in food can be balanced with the taste of a particular wine to create a gastronomical experience. Abhay Kewadkar, Chief Winemaker and Director, Four Seasons Wines Ltd, along with chefs known for their culinary expertise have been taking audiences on a journey of discovering by marrying different wines varietal with the most suitable dishes.
At an event in Delhi recently, Chef Saby of Olive designed a menu to pair his signature dishes with Four Seasons Wine. Filo-wrapped Portobello Smoked Scarmoza Ratatouille, Wild Mushroom Salsa was teamed with a Cabernet Sauvignon Four Seasons Barrique Reserve to prepare the palate for the scrumptious meal that fiollowed. The wine's complex aromas of crushed blackcurrant with a touch of spice goes very well with roasted vegetables.
Next on the menu was the Confit of Duck Leg, red cabbage slaw, caramelized shallot jus, and wine poached prunes which was paired with Four seasons Barrique Reserve Shiraz which has an intense smoky and earthy flavour on the palate and is a full bodied and complex wine. Mature cheeses also pair well this wine.
To round off this experience the chef presented guests with a Winter Choco Spiced Cake that Abhay Kewadkar paired with an off-dry Four Season's Blush which has lovely floral notes with aromas of freshly crushed strawberries and hints of sweet spice.
At another dinner at The Park in Hyderabad, Chef Mandar served Seared Duck Breast with duck confit, carrot purée and apricot tamarind jus. This was teamed with Four Seasons Barrique Reserve Shiraz, whose suppleness stood up well to the multiple flavours in the dish with its khubani infusion which Chef Mandar used to bring in local flavour.
For the vegetarian and health conscious, the chef presented a Raviolo of local greens, lemon and ricotta anolini, with saffron sauce and spinach foam. Representative of Hyderabad's greens, this vegetarian dish was again celebrated with the Shiraz Four Seasons Barrique Reserve whose complexity married well with the spice.