I sometimes stop to think how many people (beyond the rosy statistics) consider wine to be important to their lifestyles? An editorial in a UK publication stated that we wine writers deal with, arguably, a non-essential or luxury product, although its origins are agricultural. If this is the view in the UK, which is a well established wine market what would do you think is our relationship to wine? A sobering thought, especially for the pioneering publisher of a wine magazine in India.
Sommelier India is a niche, special interest publication and I feel a close kinship with our readers, both online and in print. A query from another writer about the level of interest in organic wines by Indian wine drinkers set me thinking about this growing global trend which is yet to catch on in our country. Some wineries are making valiant efforts to adopt sustainable practices, but organic, and more particularly biodynamic, schedules in the truest sense are expensive and a challenge to make in a sub-tropical country like ours.
Organic viticulture and winemaking has advanced around the world, a fact that we highlighted in our April-May issue. Bookshop shelves are packed with books on the subject. I received a new book on biodynamic wine by Monty Waldin just the other day. In this edition of SI, Steven Spurrier, who spent a week tasting wines in the Côte d’Or, describes the effect of biodynmanic practices on the wines produced in this most traditional of regions (page 50).
Keeping another rising trend in mind, we have two stories for the wine traveller. Aditi Pai’s article on the Taj Gateway hotel as a base to explore Nashik wineries (page 38) and Michele Shah on Cape Town and its winelands (page 42).
In our cover story Brinda Gill spotlights York Winery in Nashik and its talented young winemaker, Kailash Gurnani (page 16). Wine has a long history going back 8,000 years. Rosemary George, MW, writes about Georgia, a country that is rediscovering its ancient wine heritage (page 62).
Lack of space compels me to stop here, although there are other stories that I’d like to comment on and bring to your notice. I hope you will comment instead on the articles that captured your interest.
Your friend in wine,