Indian Wine Clubs on the Rise

2011 Sep 18 - by Preeti
Wine, the drink of the gods. Famously cultivated in France, Germany, Spain, Italy and South Africa, wine is a newcomer to India.


For centuries as other cultures produced various alcoholic beverages, India produced beer for its British mummy and toddy for the lush. Despite fertile lands, grapes were neither appealing as a beverage nor acceptable as a beverage for religious reasons.

Today, that is all changing with rising wealth and globalization. Indians, obsessed with whiskey for status, are learning the fine art of wine drinking rather than showing off. Easier said than done, many Indians are hard-pressed to know the differences between wines or whiskeys or cognac. The bouquets, the tannins, the creaminess, the sloshing in your mouth is the difference between a lover and an interloper.

And wine, while easy to pair with just about anything edible is near impossible to pair with Indian food. Heavy jammy wines with spices tend to fare well, but add that to a chicken tikka masala with naan and pakodas, your mouth will be having a symphonic war. Personally, I love lighter wines, e.g. white, with Indian food; they can hold themselves together and be accepting to playing a second fiddle to food. And yes of course, beer is best with spicy kebabs but hey, we are in the wine club!

For all you wine lovers out there, be sure to check out a wine club in your city. And for foreigners, some wine clubs do accept expatriates. No need to fret on the lack of Chateauneuf-du-Pape in India.

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