As a sequel to my Jaipur trip I was on my way to Nasik from Mumbai, traversing through the Sahyadris, for my brother –in-law’s wedding. The monsoon was at its peak .The hills had put on a blanket of green and misty grey clouds descended over them. Through the haze narrow water streams emerged ,flowing down these mountains. Every few kilometers you could see people huddled around one of the mini waterfalls by the road for a round of group photographs or simply to take a shower. The exuberance and the freshness of the natural beauty around spilled over to the people. I did not realize when we reached Nasik as I kept marveling at the scene outside. With no time to spare I joined my wife and her family for the wedding celebrations.
Being one of the four places where the Kumbh Mela is held Nasik is one of the holy pilgrimages for Hindus of this country. This is the city where the devotees of Sai Baba converge as they travel onwards to Shirdi. At some distance from the city is the Trimbakeshwar temple which houses one of the twelve Jyotirlingas in the country. Hence it would seem that when in Nasik you must be a pilgrim and pay homage to the sacred places. However I guess I will carry out my religious duties in my next visit to Nasik as this time I could only find time for the vineyards of Sula.The Sula Vineyards are just off the city limits and it took us around half an hour to reach there from the place where we were staying. As you enter the gate you see acres of grapevines which would ultimately yield bottles of perfectly blended wine. Right in the middle of the vineyards there was a rooftop lounge where you can hang around and savour your wine .The green and misty mountains provided a perfect backdrop and music being played in the lounge lifted the mood.
Wine is a drink which connotes sophistication and class, at least that is the way it is always projected. The idea of drinking wine is very opposite to that of having a beer where you pop open a can and gulp it down. So especially for people like me who have been a little averse to wine are sure to learn a thing or two about it at Sula by going for a Wine Tasting session which they offer here. We chose to go for the session which offered four wines. The first rule which we were told was to always hold a wine glass from its stem and not distort the intricate flavours through our body temperature. Then followed the 4S of drinking wine which is See, Swirl, Smell and Sip, strictly in that order. As you hold the glass you must first see the wine and swirl it gently. Once you are done swirling smell it to absorb the flavors and then finally sip it. The origins of the red, white, rose and sparkling wine were also explained. A lesson in the art of drinking wine was well learnt.We also took a tour of the wine factory where the fermentation process was explained.
Back from the wine tasting and tour of the wine factory it was time to relax with some wine, cheese and chocolates. The music continued to play on the deck as the dusk set in and it turned out be a beautiful hour spent in an absolutely serene surroundings.