Conversations over wine and cheese (First appeared in the DNA)

Last weekend, several Mumbai residents saved themselves a trip to the vineyards at Nasik, as they attended the 5th Wine Festival at Bandra as part of the Celebrate Bandra initiative. The festival hosted at the D’Monte Park Recreation Centre showcased some of the well-known and lesser known brands of wines, sangrias and ciders on the weekend of November 15-16, attracting a host of wine enthusiasts across Mumbai.

The festival—a celebration of food, wine and conversation was nothing short of an exploding delight to the senses. Wine and food lovers could stomp grapes, do the salsa and dance to live bands as well as cook and shop at the festival. This year, the festival also included wine walks and talks in addition to a flea market. It allowed attendees to choose wines from lesser known wineries like Charosa, Revelio, Silk Route, Riona, Rhythm and other better known establishments like Sula, Fratelli, Nine Hills and Living Liquidz.
Akalpit Prabhune, Director, Hill Crest Foods and Beverages Pvt Ltd, which was one of the lesser known brands on showcase, said that fruit wines like the Rhythm strawberry wine and the Rhythm Arun Kiwi, are gaining traction in India because they complement Indian food like butter chicken and kebabs. “Also, being light and fruity, the wine can be had alone. Since the wine is to be served chilled, it makes for a perfect summer drink.’

Dorene Marwein, an ardent wine enthusiast, attended the event to taste the wines on offer. She tasted Rhythm Winery’s Arun Kiwi, which had a raspy subtle texture with a mild aftertaste of the kiwi fruit; and Fratelli’s Cabernet Sauvignon, a medium-bodied wine tasting of luscious plum with a hint of spice that lingers on, reminding Marwein of almost-ripe grapes back home. She was particularly impressed with the Grillo from Reveilo. She adds, “Words cannot really express what goes through your mind when you sip the Grillo! The slight burst of grapes as you play around with the wine in your mouth is exquisite.”
Nupur, Bar and Beverage Consultant, Glas Apart, says, “The festival was a great show. It was lovely to see so many wine enthusiasts and people who wanted to know more about wine and how to drink it. Two wines that I really enjoyed and would suggest for buying are the Living Liquidz Moksh Grillo and the Cabernet Syrah from Chateau d’Ori. If you want a well-bodied red wine with spicy cinnamon flavours, go in for the Red Love from Kiarah Fusion Wines.”
Another wine strongly recommended by many at the festival was Fratelli’s Sidus Premium Port—a delicious wine with the right balance of body, structure and sweetness. Although not available for tasting at the festival, the wine is available at retail stores across the city.

Josephine, a teetotaller who attended the festival was tempted by a few wines. “I was particularly impressed by the Arun Kiwi wine by Rhythm Wineries and the red wine Sangria created by Nupur of Glas Apart. I don’t drink wines normally but the festival got me interested in tasting a few of them and of course, trying the wonderful cheese on offer,” she said.
Visitors could choose from an array of foods to go with their wine. Seafood from Cambay Tiger, reinvented street food from Upstreet, Terrabites, which includes bites based on global flavours inspired by food trucks around the world; and grills from Ice Apple were some that we liked. Patrons could also choose from over 20 varieties of cheese—smoked mozzarella, Cheddar, goat cheese, Gouda and Feta were on offer.

Yellow strap: To know more about the Bandra Wine Festival, visit

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