Win(e)ding down on Sunday evening.
Many people think that every day is a Sunday for the housewives who do ‘nothing’ the rest of the week . But I prefer to think that I work all week and need to unwind on a Sunday especially with a glass of wine.
My GP has actually recommends a glass of red wine every evening to bring down stress levels. While I don’t follow his advice strictly, a glass every now and then helps soothe my nerves. Particularly on days like today when I seem to have completely lost my muse.
I was lucky enough to find two opened bottles of wine standing on top of a cupboard that masquerades as a bar in our house.
Wine, especially when opened, shouldn’t be kept out unless of course you want to turn it to vinegar.
So I just had no choice but to have a glass or two.
And it was a Eureka moment for me as I poured myself a glass : I found my muse.
I could compare and contrast the two different bottles of red.
Now you may ask what is the difference between one wine and the other. After all, a grape is a grape is a grape. But there is a difference. And after several years of wine drinking, I assure you even a novice will develop his own preferences and make out the distinct flavours.
Wine lovers or oenophiles will tell you that wine has to be stored at the right temperature, served at the right temperature, in the right glass and with the right food. They are particular about the vintage and provenance and will turn their noses up at anything but the best.
It is quite obvious now, that I am no wine snob and and my opinions are entirely of the uninitiated, philistine.
So according to me here’s how the two play out.
Sula’s Cabernet Shiraz is a deep, dark , full bodied red. It tingles the insides of your mouth with a slightly sourish taste and leaves a dryish warm feeling in your mouth as you swallow it down. After a sip or two you get used to the taste.
This robust wine goes very well with dry roasts and red meat and is very popular with tandoori food. I must add that surprisingly enough, it also goes very well with masala daal fry and rice .
Sula’s Zinfandel, on the other hand is a deep though lighter red. It is mellower and has a velvety feel to it as you swirl it in your mouth, leaving a delightful after taste as you swallow it.
I particularly like to pair it with my mildly spiced chicken curry or coconut based prawn curry.
Because wines are not part of our culinary tradition, there are no set rules as to which wine goes with what. At least that’s what I like to think. Wine pairing is entirely personal and after a few tries, you yourself will come up with your own preferences and pairings.
Remember, wines are a relatively new entrant to Indian tables and for many years, Indian wines were looked down up. However, thanks to the pioneering efforts of wineries like SULA, Indian wines are as good as any ( or at least I like to think so!) international brand. In fact, many millennials prefer wines to harder liquor and a good bottle of wine has replaced the traditional bouquet of flowers that were gifted to the hostess.
So the next time you are stressed and need to unwind, particularly on a Sunday evening, just quaff a glass or two .
What is your favourite wine? Do you have any favourite pairing with Indian food? Do send me your views in the comments.
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