There is Japanese proverb, “Wine is lunatic water.” And this water is now brimming the Indian glasses. India has now become a big market on wine both as a consumer and producer. India has started producing wine and the wine lovers now have got the taste-bud for it. There are several cities like Pune, Nashik, Sangli in Maharashtra, Nandi Hills near Bangalore, and Goa which are producing wine. Maharashtra produces two third of the domestic wine and Goa produces more than 3 lakh liters of wine each year. Now state government is also supporting the wine industry by reducing excise duty.
In India we now have some brand names in wine such as: Sula, Frateli, Krsma, Revillo etc. They are now becoming international brands and they are growing some international grape varieties like Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Grillo, Viognier in whites, Shiraz, Cabernet, Sauvignon, Sangiovese and merlot.
Now Indian hard liquor drinkers are coming to wine too. More and more restaurants are opening and big international brand chains are also opening their outlets in India. Now India is becoming a bigger market in terms of hospitality industry.
It is evident that most Indian men preferred to drink hard liquor such as whiskey but now Indian men and women both are enjoying the rich taste of wine. Wine is a great drink and it has a long history and has medicinal and health benefits.
Study says that Wine drinkers are mostly the high profile people and the rich people – estimated nearly 20 million people – which is nearly 2 percent of Indian Population. These consumers are supposed to have a greater exposure to foreign food through travel and through willingness to try new products.
At present serving wine at dinner is becoming very popular in Delhi and Mumbai. Expensive and imported wines are consumed on special occasions. Red wine is the most popular wine. According to the study, there is a 45 percentage of consumption of red wine, 40 percent of white wine, 10-15 percent of Sparkling wine and 1-5 percent of rose.
It is found that there are four major states Maharashtra, Karnataka, Delhi and Goa that have a consumption of nearly 75 percent and states like Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and West Bangal have small percentages of consumption.
There is good news that 50 percent of wine is sold through restaurants, bars, hotels and pubs only. People working in corporates, media houses and other such places can easily be seen in these places as dusk begins.
India is now also importing wine from the countries such as France, Australia, Italy, Singapore, UK, USA, UAE, Germany, South Africa, Chile, Spain, New Zealand, Argentina, etc. Million liters of wine are imported every year from these countries.
Always remember another Japanese proverb while sipping wine: Friends and Wine, the older the better.