Londoners have a new exotic tipple to pair with their curries — wine made from the finest Ratnagiri alphonso mangoes. This amber tipple, which has been served to guests at Marylebone’s Ooty Restaurant for more than a year now, will also be available at retail outlets across Europe and the United Kingdom soon. Rhythm Winery, a part of Hillcrest Foods & Beverages, which makes the Rhythm Alphonso wine, said that the wine would soon be available all over the United Kingdom and Europe.
Rhythm Alphonso is a unique wine made from Alphonso mangoes picked from the Konkan region of Maharashtra. It is a light-bodied and semi-sweet wine with 12% alcohol, said Vidita Mungi, director & promoter, Rhythm Winery. “This wine can be paired with Indian, Thai and Italian cuisine,” she said, adding that alphonso wine has been exported to the UK since 2018 by Rhythm Winery, without disclosing figures.
“The wine has been very well received in prime restaurants in London such as Ooty, Sindhu, Brigadiers and so on, as well as several retail outlets across the country. It is also available for sale on online platforms such as Red Rickshaw and Feast Box,” Mungi said. Considering the welcome the wine has received in the UK, the winery now plans to expand further into the EU and Russian markets as well, she explained.
Rhythm Winery is a pioneer in India in making fruit wines. The Rhythm fruit wine range consists of peach, strawberry, alphonso mango, pineapple, kiwi, plum, mulberry and raspberry. These wines are not only an unconventional use of the fruits but create a value-added product from their abundance across the Indian subcontinent. “Our wines are fruity, delicious and exotic, which makes them an immediate attraction among consumers.” Akalpit Prabhune, director and chief wine maker of Rhythm Winery, said. Raspberry and mulberry are premium wines.
His winery had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Arunachal Pradesh Horticulture Marketing and Processing Board (APHPMPB) for producing kiwi wine in India. “Our wines are a blend of grape and fruit, where the grape adds to the structure and the fruit to the taste profile of the wine.” They are already available across Maharashtra, Goa and Arunachal Pradesh, in India. They come in two sizes variants, 750 ml and 375 ml, he explained.
“The fruit wine market is evolving in small pockets of the country where boutique wineries are making wine from local fruit. In Maharashtra, there are a few wineries making strawberry, jamun and chikku wines; in the northeast you will find wineries making lychee and plum wines,” Prabhune said. The fruit wine market is still in a very preliminary stage and will pick up in the next five years, he said.
Rhythm Winery has been distributing these wines across Maharashtra, Goa and Arunachal Pradesh. Their production capacity is 60,000 litres of wine, which they are planning to ramp up to 1 lakh litres by next year.