Indian Wine List: Wine Wednesdays Making Mumbai Wine Friendly

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Socialising & Educating at Wine Wednesday
Shiladitya Mukhopadhyaya & Aneesh Bhasin
Shiladitya Mukhopadhyaya & Aneesh Bhasin

‘Let’s make an app!’ That is how it all started; with a nonchalant statement made over one fine wine drinking evening.

Aneesh Bhasin, an award winning photographer, and Shiladitya Mukhopadhyaya, the executive director of Rasilant Technologies Pvt. Ltd., are the wine loving mavericks behind Indian Wine List – India’s first wine focused smartphone (iOS & Android) app and consumer platform. A mutual love for apps & spirits and the want to explore new avenues led them to design, create and execute Indian Wine List.

‘It really just came to us out of nowhere,’ says Aneesh about their venture. ‘Shila and I are heavy app users and so we thought of doing something on that front. Plus, the lack of an organised consumer platform that provides information on Indian wines and vineyards was something that bothered us. Even wine events held by Indian wineries are not open to the wine loving and inquisitive mass, so there really was this huge vacant space to fill. We decided to be the ones to bridge the gap.’

IWL App
IWL App

Four months into its launch, the IWL app appears to have caught the fancy of wine enthusiasts. The app downloads are consistently going up and the queries plus awareness on social media platforms is on the rise too. ‘For us, Social Media is everything,’ says Aneesh, ‘We try to answer all the queries that come our way. For example, recently someone tagged us on a tweet that inquired about a good Indian wine to purchase below INR 600. We used our app, found options and tweeted the response. That’s how we are growing – word of mouth and prompt responses.’

‘The IWL app allows you to search for the perfect partner for a particular wine or food. All you have to do is punch in your query – food item or wine choice – and the app will throw up relevant options that go with your pick,’ says Aneesh, who is only too eager and excited to share what they do and how they do it. ‘You can also browse through our wine catalogue and save preferred wines in your ‘Wine Cellar’. To keep things interesting, we pick 5-6 restaurants per month across various price-points and recommend 3-4 dishes off the restaurant’s menu list which when paired with certain wines, will considerably enhance your dining experience. We are here to be your go-to wine advisers and that’s our sole focus.’

Socialising & Educating at Wine Wednesday
Socialising & Educating at Wine Wednesday

It’s great that Aneesh and Shiladitya are putting all this effort into creating awareness about a drink that a majority of Indians don’t know much about. To be honest, some people avoid wines altogether because they are difficult to pronounce and no one wants to come across as stupid! When I share these thoughts, Aneesh is quick to respond, ‘I know what you are saying. We do intend to launch a ‘pronunciation’ feature in our app and to get people comfortable with wine. We do anyway organize ‘Wine Wednesday’. These once a month casual gatherings of about 15 people are attended by wine-makers and the laymen alike. The intention is to drink wine, talk wine and all things wine.’

Aneesh and Shiladitya with Master of Wine, Steven Spurrier
Aneesh and Shiladitya with Master of Wine, Steven Spurrier

‘The response from Indian winemakers is encouraging too,’ continues Aneesh, ‘They are only too glad to have a body that that spreads wine know-how in general.’ Just as I am almost entirely impressed, Aneesh boasts, ‘We recently attended the Hong Kong Wine Trade Fair where the Masters of Wine tasted Indian wine and tested the IWL app for the first time and they loved them both!’ And as an interviewer and wine consumer I see absolutely no reason as to why they wouldn’t.

Have you tried the app? Share your review with us!

Post By Hilonee Furia (29 Posts)

Sometimes I wish I was Shandler – quirky like Sheldon and sarcastic + funny like Chandler. But then, I am me. The girl who needs her life to be a collage of small joys, brain-tickling conversations and as impulsive as it is cautious.

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Hilonee Furia

Hilonee Furia
Sometimes I wish I was Shandler – quirky like Sheldon and sarcastic + funny like Chandler. But then, I am me. The girl who needs her life to be a collage of small joys, brain-tickling conversations and as impulsive as it is cautious.