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Brave new world... of wine

DNJAI29884 | 1/29/2012 | Author : After Hrs Correspondent | WC :409

City men sparkle at the first of the three workshops by The Jaipur Kitchen and the Wine Society of India on Saturday

It says a lot about a city when a wine appreciation class has nine men out of the total 15 that turn up! And when that city is Jaipur, it says a lot more! To us Jaipurites, at least-----especially because many of those nine brave souls are self-confessedly malt-loving creatures, who are willing to sit, swirl and sip through three hours of wine learning, tasting and more!
It says to us that the city is coming of age; and moving beyond the ‘drinks mean whiskey’, ‘wine is a ladies’ drink’, etc, etc thought that has prevailed in this whiskey-swilling city of ours. And when those men put up great questions as well, it is even more heartening; particularly when the selection includes businessmen, designers and corporate types apart from restaurateurs and chefs besides housewives, who came not least because they were prodded by their sisters!
 And while this is not to decry the women’s presence at the first of the wine and lifestyle education series-----organised by The Jaipur Kitchen in collaboration with The Wine Society of India at Marriott Jaipur on Saturday----we, at After Hrs, feel this is the best takeaway from Jaipur for wine educator Shagun Mehra!
Beginning with the grape itself (which she made the participants peel and eat), this WSET-trained (Wine and Spirit Education Trust) expert took her class through what wine is, it’s making, to the different varieties and how to enjoy them over three hours of interactive fun.
Along with tasting six different varieties of sparkling and still whites and reds, and a champagne the attendees were also taught how to assess the wines. Right from explaining how to judge a wine on the basis of their appearance, smell and palate, Mehra also gave away some tricks to open, store and serve wine correctly. “You surely don’t want your cork to be hitting someone’s eye or even breaking a plate,” she laughed while teaching two of the participants, Rahul and Sujata Bhandari, to open a bottle of champagne without spilling.
In between there were informative nuggets from her of how wines that were earlier named after the regions they were produced in are now classified upon the grapes they are made of, or that champagne is, in reality, nothing but a sparkling white!
And, if after reading this, you are regretting missing out on this session, worry not, for Vasudha Sanghi of Jaipur Kitchen has lined up level 2 of the series in the next couple of months!

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