Good wine comes when you wait for that perfect moment. In technical terms, this is when grapes are at their peak phenolic ripeness, to maximise the quality of the wine, without compromising on the colour and taste. Sounds like a precise moment, right? Well, it is!
In India, the real journey of the wine grapes begin at this time of the year. If you drive by a vineyard, you can see lush canopies bearing down with rich clusters of juicy, plump grapes. They are just ripe and ready to be plucked. (Psst…this is also the perfect time to visit a vineyard.) Unlike Europe and the US, the harvest season in India starts in February and extends till April.
The vineyards we source our grapes from, in Nashik and Ramnagar, fall under the tropical climate band where temperature rises to 45 °C in summer and can fall to 8 °C in winter. Here, the vineyards are typically located at a higher altitude, along the picturesque slopes of the hills. This way, the grapes stay protected from winds, and it also allows them to breathe in the cooler air.
While we are on the topic of wine making and harvesting, there are a few more factors that make Indian wine so special.
One, is the terroir. As you know, the quality of wine is dependant on the terroir, a set of environmental factors that affect a crop’s character. The soil and climate in Nashik and Ramnagar are just ideal for grapes to thrive and reach their fullest goodness.
Two, wine is the labour of love in India. Literally. While globally, grapes are plucked by hand only in the finest vineyards (the mass-produced ones are highly mechanised), in India grapes are largely hand-picked.
Three, in India, vines grow throughout the year. Colder countries experience a naptime in winters. But we have to prune the grapes twice – after and before the harvest. Thus, more effort goes into making wines in India than in other countries.
Four – and this is the reason Big Banyan wines are different and extra special – they are prepared under the watchful eye of our Italian vintner, Lucio Matricardi. Now you know the secret behind the magical taste!
All this talk about harvesting is making us yearn for some wine. We’ll go unbottle our season’s best, and you do the same.
Happy Diwali, folks!Are you hosting a party to celebrate the festival of lights with your friends and family? We’re sure you’re serving them your specials. But may we suggest an addition? We promise you – this one’s a total firecracker
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Experimenting with wine and food is one of our favourite pastimes. And to create easy, simple, yet incredible recipes (that anyone can make at home), we partner with some of the best bloggers in India. Our latest love is for tacos (well, they’re trending the world over, and we can’t get enough of them either).
For the warm tropical climes of India, white wines may be a great idea. They’re generally lighter than reds in terms of alcohol levels. They pair well with a wide variety of food. And they’re a great substitute for an ice-cold beer, as they’re lower in carbs. We can get you started on an incredible exploration of white wines.
Have you ever felt the need for a quick cocktail after a hard day’s work? To kick up your feet, empty your mind of all the noise, and just sip on a simple drink? We’ve got just the fix for this craving. You won’t need to look too far for the ingredients
When a sommelier describes a wine in the most poetic terms, you almost feel a twinge of envy. You wonder how one divines all those notes, and wish in all earnestly to sound just as pro as him.
As the makers of some of the finest Indian wines, we are often asked this question.