|Wine is certainly the flavour of the times. Wine features of all kinds appear regularly in the mainstream media underscoring a trend and disposition for wine information that Sommelier India magazine was the first to anticipate. We came on the scene without fanfare more than three years ago, in the midst of nay sayers, doubting Thomases and publishing pundits who doubted there was a market for a publication exclusively on wine.|
As a special interest consumer publication, SI has grown and matured along with a loyal readership that was looking for something more than the pallid stuff trotted out at the time for the mass market.
For me, it was a publishing decision that has been vindicated. And every time I see wine featured in the media, I rejoice, because it is all grist to the mill and helps the market grow, bringing more readers our way looking for specialist information that is well presented and palatable.
The latest trend on the Indian wine scene is Wine Competitions. Robert Joseph put a great deal of effort into the successful Indian Wine Challenge last year which was extensively covered on this website http://sommelierindia.com/blog. A panel of judges (which Sommelier India help select) tasted wines available in India blind. But that wasn’t the first competition or rating. An Indian preceded that competition by diligently rating Indian wines more than two years ago. That was Aakash Singh Rathore for his book, The Complete Indian Wine Guide.
Next came an expert rating of exclusively Indian wines in Nashik. Steven Spurrier, the world renowned and highly acclaimed wine taster and columnist for Decanter magazine, rated Indian wines in what was a first experience even for him. Read all about the historic tasting in Sommelier India May/June 2008. The scores themselves can be found on our blog here.
The latest wine competition was organized recently at The Shangri La Hotel in New Delhi where a selection of Indian wines were tasted and given points by a group of wine afficionados and enthusiasts under the aegis of Business Today magazine’s supplement, BT More. Interestingly, Spurrier gave similar wines higher ratings and his winners were different.
Ratings and competitions are all to the good, but ultimately they can only be recommendations. Wine has a lot more going for it than something that can be reduced to a simple mark sheet.
– Reva K. Singh
Indian Wine Challenge Results
Ratings of Indian Wines by Steven Spurrier
The Complete Indian Wine Guide