The popularity of wine in India has started growing rapidly. Along with it, India is also experiencing a boom in wine tourism. Many Indian vineyards now have tasting rooms, so wine enthusiasts can enjoy exploring India’s wine regions. It’s often possible to complete the experience by staying at at the vineyards.
India’s main wine region is Nashik, around four hours northeast of Mumbai, in Maharashtra. However, there are also some reputable wineries scattered further south in India.
1. Sula Vineyards
Sula Vineyards is India’s most popular winery. From humble beginnings in 1999, Sula Vineyards has admirably developed into a world class winery with a market share of more than 70% in India. The winery is open to visitors, who can enjoy a tour, tastings, courses, and fun events including the immensely popular SulaFest that’s held in early February each year. Little Italy restaurant serves delicious Italian cuisine to complement the wine.
Sula Vineyards established India’s first vineyard resort, called Beyond. It has 32 rooms with private balconies situated a short distance from the winery. There’s also a restaurant, swimming pool, spa and gym, and games room. Package rates start from 5,500 rupees per night for a couple. Read reviews of Beyond on Tripadvisor.
Location: On the outskirts of Nashik, off Gangapur-Savargaon Road, 20 minutes from town.
2. Grover Zampa
Grover Vineyards, one of India’s oldest wine makers situated near Bangalore in Karnataka, merged with Maharashtra-based Vallée de Vin (producer of premium wine brand Zampa) in 2012 to better compete with Sula. Established as a family business in 1988, Grover Vineyards has expanded to over 410 acres. The winery focuses on producing premium wines, with the standout being its award winning La Reserve brand of oak matured Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz reds. There are extensive wine trails across the property, and it’s also possible to visit the winery’s barrel room. Three and a half hour tours followed by lunch start daily at 10.30 a.m. Read reviews of Grover Zampa Vineyards.
Shorter tours and tastings are also offered at the ambient but much smaller Maharashtra vineyard, with its attractive courtyards. You can enjoy a variety of wines there, including Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, and sparkling Rose and Brut.
Location: Nandi Hills, around 50 kilometers north of Bangalore in Karnataka. Sanjegaon, around halfway between Igatpuri and Nashik, just off the Mumbai-Nasik Highway in Maharashtra.
3. York Winery and Tasting Room
Located not far from Sula Vineyards, and with a view over Gangapur Dam and the hills beyond, boutique York Winery is where you should head for serene sunset tastings. The tasting room is open daily from noon until 10 p.m. Tours are also offered from 12.30 p.m. until 6 p.m.
York Winery has won a range of awards for its wine varieties, both red and white. However, most impressive is its new Arros reserve blend of Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon, released in late 2014. York also released its own sparkling wine, York Sparkling Brut, near the end of 2014. It’s made from 100% Chenin Blanc grapes.
Location: On the outskirts of Nashik, off Gangapur-Savargaon Road, 20 minutes from town
4. Chateau d’Ori
Chateau d’Ori had its first harvest in February 2007 and is the second largest winery in the Nashik region after Sula, with 400 acres of vineyards. The winery produces some top quality red wines and has won a number of awards for them. According to some, Chateau d’Ori’s Cabernet Shiraz blend matches Grover’s La Reserve. Its rare straight Merlot is notable as well. Chateau d’Ori also produces Myra wines under contract with Myra Vineyards, headquartered in Bangalore, and the reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz are very drinkable.
There’s a luxury guesthouse on the property. It sits by an artificial lake in the middle of a vast expanse of grape vines, making it the perfect destination to get away from it all. Expect to pay around 6,500 rupees for a one night package for a couple. The winery’s state-of-the-art technology is worth checking out too.
Location: At the base of the picturesque Nhera-Ori hills at Dindori, around 25 kilometers (30 minutes) north of Nashik on the Nashik-Dindori Road.
5. Charosa Vineyards
Charosa Vineyards was set up on a sprawling 230 acres of land in 2008 but didn’t enter the wine market until late 2013. It targets the premium segment and has three different labels at various price points: Reserve, Pleasures, and Selection.
Charosa introduced Tempranillo, a grape of Spanish origin, to the Indian market for the first time. Its Reserve Tempranillo has drawn many accolades and is perhaps the pick of the wines. However, the Sauvignon Blanc is refreshingly good for a white wine in India and Charosa produces the best Voignier too.
It’s possible to visit the vineyard and sample the wine, although lack of decent roads from Nashik is a limiting factor. It’s a narrow, winding journey to get there.
Location: Charosa village, around 55 kilometers (one hour) from Nashik in the Dindori district.