Our research shows that the country or region of origin factors in the wine buyer’s decision making process as the third most important after only the type or colour of wine (red, white, rosé, etc.) and price. Of course this is a generalisation, but suffice it to say that the region or country of origin really matters to most wine consumers. This is also reflected in the success stories of regions like Bordeaux and Burgundy; the success of Australia, California, South Africa and Chile in recent decades demonstrates that things haven’t changed much!
The word 'terroir' comes from the word 'terre' or 'land'. Originally a French term, it used to denote the special characteristics that geography bestowed upon the vineyards and the grapes. Agricultural sites in the same region share similar soil, weather conditions, and farming techniques, all of which contribute to the unique qualities of the crop. It can be very loosely translated as 'a sense of place' which is embodied in the produce, the sum of the effects that the local environment has had on it.
The best advocates of the concept of terroir, of course, are the French. The New World has led the way towards varietal-based wines, but almost all of them still identify themselves as originating from their respective regions. The debate about terroir is probably not going to end in a hurry. At Soul Tree we believe that the macro-climate, the micro-climate, and even the meso-climate of a region go hand in hand with the soil, the lay of the land, the viticultural practices adopted, and even the passion and dedication of the farmers to ultimately influence the quality and taste of the wine.
Soul Tree is perhaps one of the world’s first few wines coming from the tropics. Nasik Valley is located at 20°N latitude, on a plateau some 2000 ft above sea level and about 100 miles from the west coast of India - it is now widely being seen as having some of the best terroir in Asia. The vineyards are harvested at the end of a dry winter with a high temperature difference between the hot days and cool nights. In fact it is perhaps one of very few regions in the world where the grapes are harvested at the end of winter.
India has a wine-drinking tradition that can be traced back to the middle ages. True, it has not been a part of the wine world as we know it for the last 2-3 centuries, but Indian wine has seen a revival over the last 40 years - and this has been rapidly accelerating. Over the last 10 years the domestic Indian wine industry has been growing at over 35% annually!
Besides, the modern Indian wine story started in a day and age where farming and viticultural practices, wine-making equipment and techniques, and even the expertise of some of the world’s best winemakers were no longer constrained by geographical boundaries. Gone are the days when France, Italy or Spain could lay claim to practices that could not be emulated by other regions.
Indian wine has made rapid progress on the world stage over the last few years, and continues to do so in leaps and bounds. It already makes some very good wines - like Soul Tree - but it won’t be long before almost all the wine coming out of India will be comparable with some of the best in the world.
The last time we counted, there were over 7000 different wine brands available in the UK, and these include wines from the length and breadth of the world. Wine is not about finding a favourite and drinking it every day, but about being adventurous, about experimenting, and about going out and trying to find a wine that excites you on a particular day!
At Soul Tree we do not believe in trying to prove how we are better than the competition, but rather in drawing your attention to a fantastic option that, we think, you will find to be different from many of the wines you have had. Soul Tree is also the authentic replacement for all the curry accompaniments that have been pushed your way so far.
So, having curry tonight? Have a Soul Tree. Feel adventurous and dislike the idea of picking up just another Australian or Californian wine? Pick up Soul Tree. It’s okay if you go back to your trusted New Zealand tomorrow or to Chile the day after. As we said, try something new. But we are confident you will like Soul Tree enough to want to keep coming back.
In a word, Yes! Food that is consumed with wine has an impact on how the wine tastes, and wine often alters the taste of food. A good food-wine pairing will take advantage of these effects in a way that will enhance the whole consumption experience. The understanding of these basic interactions between food and wine goes a long way in suggesting pairings and in crafting wine styles.
Pairing wine with spicy food, however, can be very challenging. Spicy Indian cuisine can take complexity to another level with a multitude of flavours and textures which are often augmented by chilli heat. Chilli heat tends to increase the perception of acidity, bitterness, and alcohol burn while decreasing the perception of fruitiness, sweetness and overall body in the wine.
At Soul Tree a lot of work has gone into crafting a range of wines that beautifully complement the spices and textures in spicy Indian cuisine. Head on to our Food pairing page here for details of pairing each of our wines with the most popular Indian dishes.
It is important to remember, however, that food is about experience, and so is wine. Subtle differences in the location, the lighting, the mood, the music, the company, and even the glass you’re drinking in can change the wine-drinking experience. Complementing Indian cuisine with a genuinely Indian wine completes the Indian dining experience in a subtle, but very powerful way.
From Soul Tree, the wine, you can expect some of the best wines from India, period. Expect international varietals, but with a tropical twist. Expect some of the flavours and colours that you could expect from India: diversity, mystique, emotion, chaos, a warm soul, and a spicy edge. Expect an approachable wine, yet a wine full of character.
From us at Soul Tree, you can expect a dedicated and unflinching attempt to keep bringing you some of the best wines that India has to offer. Expect socially responsible people that care about you, the consumer, the environment, and the poor farmers of India. And most importantly, expect to make friends for life.
The Soul Tree swirls represent the spirit of India. You can read about them here.
Get in touch with us, and we will be happy to help. You can write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on +44 121 679 5626.