The Grape Escape: Abhay Kewadkar

Jaw dropping scenic views of the lush green vineyards, grape stomping, sipping on some of the finest tipples paired with cheese and farm to fork food. Visiting vineyards is a trend that’s fast catching up with not just the wine enthusiasts, but also those who want to indulge in novel experiences. Next time when you open a bottle of wine, you will know exactly how the vino managed to acquire that smooth flavour with just the right hint of fruits, spices or that deep hue. Decode the entire process of winemaking on your next trip to a winery. Here’s a roundup of all the popular wineries you can visit.

By Namita Gupta

Abhay Kewadkar, the Chief Winemaker & Director, Four Seasons Wines

Genie in a bottle: The French chateau styled with elements of the famed Palace, Four Seasons winery is nestled in the village of Roti in Baramati, 65 km from Pune and set amidst 50 acres of vineyards, designed by architect, Navzer Irani in the year 2007.

Wine varietals: Four Seasons portfolio consists of red, white and rosé wines, and spread across different price points in the country. Grape varieties such as Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are used for making the red wines, and the white wines are made primarily from Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier. The premium range of the portfolio, namely the flagship brand – Four Seasons Vintners Reserve Select Barrels (Limited Edition) and Barrique Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz are aged in French oak barrels before bottling. The wines are mostly dry to semi-dry styled.

Vineyard tours: Four Seasons hosts vineyard tours at the Four Seasons winery in Baramati. The facility boasts 10 beautifully done-up rooms and four suites, an open air pool, Jacuzzi and a restaurant. A typical tour includes a guided walk through the vineyards, as an expert explains the different grapes that are grown there, a guided tour of the sophisticated winery to know the process of wine-making, a structured wine tasting session where one gets to learn the basics and try the wines too, and of course exploring the great outdoors, whether on a mountain bike or following the trail that leads to an amazing view of the undulating terrain and landscape and if you are lucky you spot deer and wild boars. One can also visit the Bhigwan Lake for boating and for a relaxing bird watching session. Guests can also indulge in an open-air barbeque under the night sky and by the pool side. There’s plenty to do at and around the Four Seasons winery and it’s a perfect holiday destination! One can try three of red wines, which includes two classic wines and 1 reserve wine, 2 of our white wine varietals, and 1 rosé wine during the structured tasting. Also, we don’t host wine festivals as such but we do participate in wine festivals across India. Grape stomping is organised during the harvest season for guests visiting the winery. An overnight package would cost about Rs 6500 + taxes which includes all three meals (lunch and dinner on Day 1 & breakfast on Day 2) + a tour of the vineyards and winery, use of all recreational facilities and structured Wine tasting during your stay.

Not just wine & cheese: Four Seasons wines are made to suit a variety of preferences of the Indian palate. Whether it’s a local cuisine or an international dish, there is a wine sure to pair beautifully with it. For instance while the Vintners Reserve and Barrique Reserve will pair very well with a roast lamb rack, older cheeses and barbequed red meat, the white wines equally complement green vegetables, salads and rich fish & seafood dishes, or mildly spiced Indian and Asian cuisine.

Where: Four Seasons Winery, amidst the Sahyadri valley, Baramati, Pune

Call: +91 9876 543210