A large part of my life revolves around wine. Much of it is very rewarding and satisfying like the release of a brand new issue every two months. But it is also a reminder of how much there is to learn. Continue reading Reva K. Singh’s Editor’s Note which discusses how wine is an exciting subject but one that can also be quite daunting.
Subscribe to Sommelier India and receive our bumper 96-page issue at your doorstep. Sommelier India is written by some of the best wine writers in the world and targets Indians who enjoy wine and the good life.
Wine is an exciting subject but it can also be very daunting.
Luckily, there are many ways to gain wine knowledge. The best way to learn about wine is to drink it and gather as much information as you can. Wine bars and vinotecas are great places to learn. Two that come immediately to mind are Vinoteca by Sula in Mumbai and The Oberoi New Delhi, which started a programme for wine lovers to sample different wines on different days of the week at Travertino’s Enoteca about a year ago. If you taste the wines with the sommelier and pay attention to their differences, you’ll discover how educational this can be.
At Sommelier India we regularly taste wines to recommend to readers and then invite wine lovers to join in the Open House that follows and drink the wine with specially paired snacks. In this issue it’s a selection of rosé wines that we describe on page 28 which, combined with David Cobbold’s article, will give you a better understanding of a style of wine that is becoming increasingly popular.
A big chunk of the issue is about our favourite five-star restaurants around the country that offer a good wine and food experience. I hope our Restaurant Supplement starting on page 43 encourages you to visit some of the restaurants listed. Do give us news of your own personal favourites.
Ideally, India needs more Vinoteca restaurants of the kind that Jane Anstee describes on page 37, where you can sample lots of wine in a convivial, relaxed atmosphere. And if you like any you can buy a bottle to take home. Joel Payne’s article “In the Dragon’s Throat” (page 20), provides an insight into China’s wine industry which in some respects is far ahead of ours. Although the Chinese market is still dominated by beer and cheap booze, it is only a matter of time, says Payne, when it will become the number one consumer as the current generation finds wine attractive and has the money to spend. With import duties at only 48% and neither state taxes nor registration fees to pay, wine is also cheap when compared to India.
Wines from Europe’s indigenous grapes like those from Austria (page 78) are winning accolades and becoming popular with consumers. Sicily is catching up with its local varieties too (page 84). In spite of its small area under cultivation, Etna has become trendy with wines that have an aura of prestige comparable to that of classic Italian wines such as Barolo, Brunello di Montalcino and Amarone, even though very few people distinguish between wines from eastern and western Sicily. There’s a great deal to enjoy about wine and the learning never stops!