Tippling point in second wine fest

Tippling point in second wine fest

The Karnataka Wine Board is organising the first ever Bangalore International Wine Festival at the Palace Grounds this weekend (April 10 to 11).

The event offers exhibition-cum-sale of wine brands, both native and foreign, wine tasting sessions and the experience of grape stomping. Visitors to the festival can take part in grape stomping as individuals, as a couple or even as part of a group.

This is the second festival being organised by the board after the State government released its own wine policy. In July 2009, the festival, restricted for local brands, attracted huge crowd. This time foreign wine importers — Aspiri Spirits, Wine Dynasty, Wine Baron — will take part. Besides, native brands Naka Wines and Kinvah will have stalls. Altogether 24 stalls will be set up. Subir Hari Singh, chairman of the board, said the festival is to promote grape cultivation and consumption of wine. “Grape is a profitable crop. Promotion of the crop and the drink through the festival helps the industry as well as the farming community,” he said.

The State government claims that wine sales in Karnataka has gone up considerably in the last four years. There was production of 13.1 lakh litres of wine in 2006-2007, whereas in 2009-2010 it went up to 18. 5 lakh litres. In 2006 there were only two wineries in the State.

And now, five more are being set up.  “This growth is due to the government’s measures to promote wine cultivation and the industry,” S G Hegde, secretary of Horticulture, said.
People from the wine industry expect a leap in wine consumption in the coming years.
B N Nanjundaiah, owner of Naka Wines, said: “At present only 10,000 cases are being sold in a month in Karnataka. I expect it may go up to 1 lakh cases in the next five years.”

The board has plans to hold similar festivals in Mysore, Mangalore and Belgaum by the end of this year.

The festival includes entertainment programmes from globally known troupes. The event is open for the public. Entry ticket is priced at Rs 100 per ticket. Separate charges are collected for grape stomping.

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