The Source at Sula Vine­yards


Upscale Living Magazine - - Wines + Spirits - | By Jy­oti Balani

Re­cently I was in­vited to visit The Source at Sula Vine­yards- In­dia’s lead­ing wine com­pany in Nashik in In­dia, a beau­ti­ful Tus­can-style bou­tique re­sort sit­u­ated at the site of Sula’s his­toric first win­ery which her­alded the birth of Nashik as In­dia’s pre­mier wine re­gion.

Sula Vine­yards is a wine com­pany in In­dia that has pi­o­neered sev­eral unique con­cepts in the wine in­dus­try, in­clud­ing wine tourism. Ra­jeev Sa­mant founder and CEO- Sula Vine­yards came up with Be­yond Vine­yard Re­sort in Nashik. Close to Sula Vine­yards, at the edge of Gan­ga­pur Lake, the Sky Villa is a great choice for those look­ing for a uniquely lux­u­ri­ous hol­i­day in the vicin­ity of vine­yards. Three taste­fully de­signed suites over­look­ing the lake comes with a per­sonal care­taker.

The Source used to be Sula’s first win­ery that has been now con­verted into a 23 room bou­tique re­treat with a spa, one that is lo­cated within the vine­yards so that visitors can have a holis­tic ex­pe­ri­ence all at one place, un­der one roof. A wine en­thu­si­ast can be part of the wine mak­ing process, un­der­stand­ing how grapes are cho­sen and how wines are made. Ce­cilia Oldne, Vice Pres­i­dent, Mar­ket­ing and Global Brand Am­bas­sador, Sula Vine­yards says, “Be­sides be­ing the largest wine pro­ducer in In­dia, we have pi­o­neered wine tourism in the coun­try.

Over the years, we have emerged as one of the most vis­ited vine­yards in the world and have es­tab­lished our­selves as the #1 spot glob­ally where peo­ple drink their first glass of wine. We also play a sig­nif­i­cant role in put­ting Nashik on the world wine map with Sula Vine­yards be­ing the big­gest non-re­li­gious tourist site in Maharashtra to­day. The grow­ing num­ber of an­nual visitors and the many pres­ti­gious awards for our con­tri­bu­tion to wine tourism in the coun­try is tes­ti­mony to our ef­forts in this di­rec­tion. Nashik is only a three hour beau­ti­ful drive from Mum­bai through the stun­ning Western Ghats and our vine­yards are a must visit for any­one who hasn’t been yet!”

The Source at Sula has 23 unique rooms, in­clud­ing a tower suite, ten vine­yard view rooms, four court­yard view rooms, four vine­yard view suites, four charm­ing ‘closer to na­ture’ Tree Houses. Our visit be­gan with a lunch hosted by Sula’s Chief wine­maker Karan Vasani fol­lowed by a

tour of the re­sort con­ducted by Head of Sula’s Hos­pi­tal­ity Op­er­a­tions Monit Dhavale.

Sula’s award-win­ning wines are avail­able na­tion­wide at the finest ho­tels and restau­rants and are also ex­ported through­out the world. Sula is also a pioneer in In­dia’s wine tourism open­ing the coun­try’s first win­ery Tast­ing Room in 2005 and first vine­yard re­sort, Be­yond by Sula, in 2007. With over 230,000 visitors last year, Sula is one of the most vis­ited winer­ies in the world and the first place where In­di­ans first taste wine. Sula Vine­yards won the pres­ti­gious Drinks Busi­ness Award 2016 for the ‘Best Con­tri­bu­tion to Wine and Spir­its Tourism’! This is the first time an In­dian com­pany has won a Drinks Busi­ness Award. Firmly com­mit­ted to re­main­ing at the fore­front of In­dian wines, Sula con­tin­ues to ex­per­i­ment with new va­ri­etals, en­gages in sus­tain­able agri­cul­ture and sup­ports the lo­cal ru­ral econ­omy. Well on its way to be­com­ing one of the world’s most sus­tain­able wine pro­duc­ers, the com­pany is also a lead­ing wine and spir­its im­porter, with Sula Se­lec­tions, a port­fo­lio of pres­ti­gious brands like Remy Coin­treau, Hardys, Cono Sur and Asahi.

With fa­cil­i­ties like a swim­ming pool, tennis court, spa, gym and restau­rant, along with Sula’s sig­na­ture wine tourism ac­tiv­i­ties such as win­ery tours and tast­ing ses­sions with the wine­mak­ers, there’s lot to keep one busy while at The Source. Lo­cated closer to the re­sort, the Tast­ing Room is a vi­brant struc­ture play­ing some of the most pop­u­lar mu­sic, cou­pled with fan­tas­tic views of the vine­yards and some great food to taste while sip­ping on a glass of Sula wine. Visitors can also find their pre­ferred wine by tast­ing sev­eral wines va­ri­etals and they can later buy their choice of wines. Sula Vine­yards also houses Soma and Lit­tle Italy for those who pre­fer a full fledged lunch or din­ner.

While on my way in­side The Source, I no­ticed cheerful yel­low col­ored bi­cy­cles lined up, I was in­formed that guests of­ten went cycling up and around the vine­yards. Monit Dhavale, Head of Sula’s Hos­pi­tal­ity Op­er­a­tions said, “Peo­ple from all over the world want to come stay at our vine­yards which are now world fa­mous. Our other prop­er­ties Be­yond by Sula with also Sky Villa are very pop­u­lar and have their own charm but we could not think of a bet­ter place and ex­pe­ri­ence to of­fer than one at the build­ing of our very first win­ery.”

Ce­cilia Oldne, VP- Mar­ket­ing and Global Brand Am­bas­sador, Sula Vine­yards said, “We have re­tained much of the Rahul Mehro­tra de­signed win­ery’s orig­i­nal struc­ture and added a Tus­can twist to it! You re­ally feel a part of his­tory spend­ing time at The Source at Sula. It’s truly a stun­ning prop­erty and a must visit!”

Dur­ing a wine tast­ing ses­sion in the re­sort, we were in­tro­duced to Sula Vine­yard’s lat­est of­fer­ing, The Source Gre­nache Rose which comes in an el­e­gantly cre­ated bot­tle with min­i­mal­is­tic de­sign el­e­ments on the la­bel! The Source Gre­nache Rosé comes from the lush vine­yards of Sula, and this beau­ti­ful dry ‘Gre­nache’ has been named af­ter the his­toric site be­ing now turned into a lux­ury re­sort where I was hosted. The launch of this new wine marks the in­tro­duc­tion of a Su­per Pre­mium Rose to the Sula port­fo­lio. The Source Gre­nache Rose has a pale co­ral hue with invit­ing aro­mas of white peach, cit­rus and trop­i­cal fruits. With a lux­u­ri­ant mouth feel, bright acid­ity and an ele­gant fin­ish, this dry rose is the per­fect wine for ev­ery oc­ca­sion and can also serve as an aper­i­tif on a warm day. It’s great for a back­yard bar­be­cue with salad, fish or chicken and goes re­ally well with spicy Asian cui­sine.

A stay at The Source in Sula Vine­yards in the city of Nashik in In­dia was a fab­u­lously unique ex­pe­ri­ence in the midst of na­ture, great food and ex­cel­lent In­dian wine. Worth sev­eral vis­its when in In­dia!

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