Tag Archives: india

India, wine and change

Wine is all about change. Like any worthy thing in life it is dynamic and never ceases to surprise. The bottles that lie in our cellars provide the obvious example.Wine ageing is beautiful yet mostly mysterious. We know it happens but we’re not entirely sure why, how long and how the hell its gonna end. I, in any case, stopped trying.

But this is not the only fascinating time aspect that involves wine. My palate constantly changes. Most of the wines I loved two years ago seem to be irrelevant now. I enjoy this change, cherish it and believe that the day it stops I might just retire (or maybe it is a lame excuse to stop working). And this is possibly why wine is such an unpredictable and fascinating adventure. With so much to learn and discover, any other approach will just not work.

It was with this good spirit that I sat down to taste a selection of wine from Grover vineyards. Now Bangalore India is not the first place you think of as a wine region. Turned out that the Nandi Hills region located 40 kilometres towards north of Bangalore is just that. Back in the old days (that might also be referred as the 80s) George Vessele spent five years covering every candidate region in India. His conclusion was that Nandi Hill is where it all should happen. 20 years and 200 hectares later, armed with another mega French consultant (no less than Mr. Rolland lui meme) Grover are ready to take on the world but are we ready for Indian wine?

Sauvignon Blanc “Art Series” 2009 – the nose bursts with white fruits, spices an elegant herbaceous note. Few minutes later and a light yeasty note popped. The palate is rich in style with plenty of fruit. Citrus, stone fruits, a hint of creaminess and a pleasant oily /vaxy character. Lush, deep and concentrated this is a very original style of Sauvignon. And all at only 12% abv.

La Reserve 2006 – Clean and restrained nose. Cassis, plums and a dried herb note. Surprisingly concentrated yet not overdone. Palate is elegant with fresh acidity and a descent fruit concentration. After a few minutes the palates open up. A hint of floral note, dried herbs, cassis and a lean minerality. Difficult to associate it with the Indian heat. A lovely glass of straightforward yet elegant red.

Few years back I wouldn’t admit a new world wine in my glass. I know better now. Today it’s the flavours that thrill me, much less where they come from.

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