Be Indian, Drink Indian! Wine & Food Pairings for Diwali from the Sommelier India Wine Panel

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Diwali
Indian wines are getting better by the day and have been recognised around the world as the best in category, produced under unique and challenging conditions. It’s now widely accepted that great wines can be produced in India. And there’s ample choice for all palates. So drink Indian and set your sights high. Whether it’s for drinking or gifting, here are our wine recommendations for Diwali.

Just a word of caution: Buy your wines from a trusted source where they have been properly stored, and, serve the reds cool, and the whites well chilled. The prices are mostly from a retailer in south Delhi.

SPARKLING WINES
Zampa Soirée Brut – Rs 1,200
Grapes: 100% Chenin Blanc from Nashik.
Citrus and floral aromas. Light and creamy, persistent bubbles, crisp acidity with dry finish in classic brut style. Makes an ideal aperitif.
Pairing: Think mango! Delicious mango chutney with spiced papads or one could take the sweeter route and go with a heavenly mango kulfi.

Chandon Rosé Brut – Rs 1,500
Grapes: Shiraz from Nashik
A delicate pink with fine bubbles, fruity aromas of ripe cherries and mouth-filling flavours of red fruits and soft grapefruit. Rich, creamy, long-lasting finish.
Pairing: Tried and tested raj kachori is a daring but divine match for the rosè. The sweet and savoury notes in the chaat compliments the wine well and the extra pomegranate toppings play beautifully with the wine’s flavour profile.

RED WINES
KRSMA Cabernet Sauvignon – Rs 1,500 in Karnataka
Grapes from Hampi Valley, Karnataka. Cork closure.
Deep ruby appearance, soft floral scents, fruit forward with powerful, ripe and concentrated spices.
Pairing: Spiced kebabs all the way! From chicken tikka to murgh malai. Cabernet Sauvignon pairs well with grilled and smoked meats. Paneer tikka and char grilled vegetarian tikkas are also a great combination.

Grover Zampa Chêne Grande Reserve – Rs 1,850
Grapes: Tempranillo and Shiraz, from Igatpuri in Nashik. Cork closure.
Clear, ruby colour, aromas of ripe stone fruits. Fruity, slightly off-dry palate, medium acidity and tannins, with hints of vanilla and cinnamon from oakageing. Great structure and elegant finish.
Pairing: Chaats are an ideal match for the wine. The merge of both savoury and sweet in many famous Indian chaat dishes pair wonderfully well in this case.

Fratelli M/S Sangiovese – Rs 1,170
Grapes: Sangiovese, Cabernet Franc,  Shiraz from Akluj near Pune. Screwcap closure.
Medium bodied, predominantly Sangiovese red blend. Red fruit aromas and good, almost tart, acidity. A lovely soft, fruity wine with a balanced and pleasantly dry finish.
Pairing: The wine matches effortlessly with tomato based curries- butter chicken, vindaloo etc. The bold flavours in the food compete well the wines profile.

Sula Vineyards Dindori Reserve – Rs 890
Grapes: 100% Shiraz from Nashik Valley. A full flavoured Shiraz. Deep garnet colour, pronounced aromas of red cherries, sweet spices and peppers, this wine offers a melange of flavours with rich dark fruits, spice and subtle oak. Medium to full bodied with good length. Screwcap closure.
Pairing: A fragrant Biryani would pair scrumptiously with the wine. The smoky, spicy rice dish merges perfectly with the boldness and rich feel of the Shiraz.

Reveilo Merlot – Rs 695 in Maharashtra
Grapes: 100% Merlot from Nashik. Cork closure.
Intense ruby colour, medium-body, with mouth-filling flavours of ripe plums, black cherries and cassis plus a little spice. Supple tannins and balanced acidity. Smoother and less aggressive than Cabernet Sauvignon.
Pairing: Kashmiri biryani is an ideal choice. Even though the dish seems mild medium on the spice front, it packs a punch with the other aromatic kitchen spices which keeps the dish at par with the wine.

WHITE WINES
Fratelli Sangiovese Bianco – Rs 880
Grape: 100% Sangiovese from Akluj. Cork closure.
Delicate aromas of citrus fruit and bread crust. Creamy yellow apple, lemon drop and mineral flavours, a savoury nutty finish. Made with a red grape, this unique white Sangiovese is a first for India.
Pairing: No pairing notes.

Grover Zampa Sauvignon Blanc Art Collection – Rs 780
Grapes: 100% Sauvignon Blanc from the Nandi Hills, Karnataka. Cork closure.
Pale lemon appearance, highly aromatic of pear and tropical fruits. Off dry palate, sharp acidity with a refreshing, subtly savoury taste. Medium length.
Pairing: Saag goes wonderfully with sauvignon blanc. It marries well with the herbal, savoury character that’s present in the wine.

Vallonné Viognier Reserve – Rs 950 in Maharashtra
Grapes: 100% Viognier from Nashik. Screwcap closure.
Gentle, golden yellow, fresh, crisp wine with aromas and flavours of peach, sweet lime and fragrant white flowers. Barrel fermented and barrel aged.
Pairing: Chicken/paneer malai tikka is a perfect dish to serve with a glass of Viognier. The dish floats on an equal level with the wine’s delicate flavour profile and the noticeable acidity keeps the palate fresh enough.

York Chenin Blanc – Rs 625
Grape: 100% Chenin Blanc, Nashik Valley. Screwcap closure.
A semi-dry Chenin Blanc fermented in stainless steel tanks and oak barrels. Aromas of fresh, tropical fruits like guava and pineapple. Good structure and complexity, balanced acidity and long finish.
Pairing: A korma is a divine option! The fresh acidity present in the wine acts as a palate cleanser in between bites making the pairing an exquisite experience and not overwhelming.

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