Wine selection out of hundreds available in retail is not easy. One has to remain objective, neutral and within a framework which needs to be defined precisely. So when the editor of Golf Digest asked me to select three red and three white imported wines for his readers, I decided to choose wines that are not table wines- at least a notch or two above the entry level and yet are quaffable-good for daily drinking and within every golfer's budget. I have also kept in mind to showcase as many varietals and countries as possible, avoiding to repeat a grape varietal. Price affordability was an important factor in the selection.
The wines are generally available in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore. The prices given are the MRP in Delhi. Chandigarh, Haryana, Mumbai and Bangalore would be cheaper by up to 30% than Delhi where the excise duties are the highest. I have picked out 3 reds and 3 whites.
Albert Bichot Cote du Rhone (France)
Made from a blend of Grenache White grape, blended with local varieties, the medium bodied wine is fruity , spicy and with crispy freshness and good mouthfeel, making it a good pair with chicken, pork chops and vegetarian dishes, it is a good value for money wine at MRP of Rs.1200 in Delhi. Serve at 10-12° C
Baron Philippe de Rothschild Sauvignon Blanc (Chile)
The collaborative effort of the First Growth Bordeaux producer shows in the clean, aromatic, light bodied wine which is crisp and delightful with lush and tropical flavours that would be welcome with most snacks and fish. To be served chilled at 10° C. MRP Rs.1300
Alois Legeder Riff Pinot Grigio 2008 (Italy)
Alois Legeder is a well known wine producer from Trentino area in north of Italy. The entry level light-medium bodied wine made from the popular grape is straw yellow colour with shades of green. It has aromas of apples and peaches. The flavour is clean and persistent and very crisp, fresh , elegant, light to medium-bodied with a fresh mouth-watering finish. Retails for Rs.1050. Drink chilled at 10° C as aperitif and sea food and salads.
Norton Barrel Select Malbec 2008 (Argentina)
Made from signature grapes of Argentina this fruity and rich medium bodied red wine is juicy, tasting of stone fruits and black cherries, full of spices and black pepper. This entry level wine is a very good buy at Rs.925
Torres Gran Coronas 2005 (Spain)
The blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% of Spanish grape Tempranillo from Torres is one of the best value- for- money fine quality wines. Lot of plum and berries on the nose, full on the mouthfeel, with persistent fruity flavour, balanced tannins make this wine a serious one with red meats and rich gravies. Serve at 14° C.MRP Rs.1650.
Caliterra Merlot Reserva (Chile)
A collaborative effort of the late American icon Robert Mondavi and Eduard Chadwick, a quality producer of Chile, is visible in this ruby red full bodied wine with fruity fragrances has enticing flavours in the palate, juicy tannins and a luscious, lasting impression of the spices, smoke and herbs, making it quite complex. Drink at 16° C. MRP Rs.1137
The above article appears in the current edition of Golf Digest- editor