Two New Yorkers spend six months 18 months!?! in Bangalore and other places in India.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Wine Time 11: Evita Ruby Red

Blue Star Agro & Winery, Pune
Rs. 274

This wine is described as "fruity, dry, light, and stable," with a "distinctive bouquet." It's also made from "classic grape varieties," but those are not named. It's also called a "value-for-money" wine that's ideal with "cheese and meat dishes."

Don't cry for me having to drink this wine, because it was decent. It seemed to us a little like a beaujoulais nouveau -- it was drinkable, very light, fun, without much complexity. The only weird thing was a kind of odd smell, a little like rubber or something. But it wasn't bad, all in all. We give it 7.5, with an extra half point for the under-300-rupees price.

Interestingly, Dr. Rathore says that this is one of "Blue Star's cheapest, and doesn't really warrant attention." The 2004 version got an average rating. I think it's a bit better than average -- perhaps it's improved.


Cindy/Snid said...

I continue to read and make note of the wines you are finding in Bangalore. I did read somewhere yesterday (some online India news site) that they are getting ready to lower the import duty on wines in India. Should make for more good wines being available.

"Grover Vineyards plans to sparkle, literally and otherwise. In three years, come the festive season of 2010, it will launch its sparkling wine. Plus, it has taken a series of steps which will enable it to retain its presence at the quality end of the booming Indian wine market.

This market is set to drastically change with the sharp cut in import duty on foreign wines and the launch of wines by brewers and distillers like UB, Seagram and Diageo. This is the challenge facing established Indian wine makers like Grover Vineyards, Indage and Sula."

Tripp Hall said...

Cindy, the whole duty thing is enough to make your head spin. I think the country-wide lowering may have already gone into effect. The Gourmet Foodworld store on MG road, for instance, had some decent-looking Spanish (I think) wine that was 800 rs. -- still a lot, but I don't think it would have been that cheap last year.

But on the other hand, individual states can set up their own rules about handling liquor. That's why Tamil Nadu's liquor stores are such pits. And why Maharashtra in its wisdom has decided to raise the duty on imported wine from 150% to 200%. According to the article just linked, Bombay slurps up a full 40% of all the wine drunk in India. Not that there's all that much, but still.

Cindy/Snid said...

well, I guess I am for anything that lets us get halfway decent wine once in a while! Thanks for your thoughts.