A SOBER’s TALE.
When I decided to do my thesis on Winery, few questions were fired to me expect the normal ones like what, why and where. Especially a lot of “IF” and “CAN” questions. All I knew was that I wanted to explore more on it.
People suggested me to choose a different topic as I didn’t know anything about wines initially expect it is red. I didn’t have any difficulty while doing the synopsis expect that I had to make a little extra study on this topic than the other. Apart from the justifications that I had mentioned in the report, I did have few for my own and there was one common reason when I jotted them all together and that is “I HAVE NEVER BEEN TO THOSE PLACES BEFORE AND I CAN NEVER IF I LEAVE THIS CHANCE”. I blindly said I wanted to take up Winery among the other reports that I made. The reason might sound lame. Just like how the concept has been evolved from potatoes and tomatoes during the initial years of our design as a student, I was inspired by a web series called “Little Things”. I was curious and excited about my thesis not only for designing but also to visit the place. To explore more about the wine industry.
When I visited the Big Banyan Vineyards, Bangalore I did experience Robert Stevenson’s saying – “Wine is a bottled poetry”. After making a study on wines and vineyards to the Indian context I was surprised to know that wines are not alienated drinks but a drink that has an Indian fabric. Indian states – Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Mizoram are the major contributors in the cultivation of grapes for making wine as the climatic and the soil conditions of India are favorable for the vineyards. And from the studies that I did for the report, I knew that wines also exists in white and pink shades apart from deep red.
Wines can be classified into Red, White, Rose, Sparkling, Dessert, Ice and Fortified wines based on the method of preparation. Although there are different types of wines on a larger scale, the widely consumed ones in the Indian context are the Red, White, Rose and the Dessert wines. Wine consumption rather the wine culture is something that is being practiced and adopted globally. There is a rapid increase in consumption of wine particularly in India, the wine consumption is increasing at a rate of 6% per annum.
Though India especially certain places of Tamil Nadu just like Cumbbum which belongs to the Theni district has its urban fabric with vineyards for centuries it is sad, to know that the majority among us ain’t aware what a winery or vineyard is. I was shocked rather than surprised by the results of the online survey that I did for the thesis which covered people from different age groups and platforms. There was this one question – “Are you aware of what a winery is?”. I felt so lame while drafting the questionnaire to add very basic questions like these but I had to go with few guidelines of drafting a questionnaire and that is when I included them. The result was 55/45. Out of 475 people, 213 were not aware of what a winery or a vineyard is. The fabric of a place is stitched with the activities happening in the zone. Later I did realize that we are unaware of our urban fabrics.
Before reading more on this what I knew was all that a winery is a space that is involved in the production of wine and vineyards are the farms in which grapes are being cultivated for making wine. Unlike other industries, a winery is something more related to nature and emotions. Generally on a broader scale industries are hardly sustainable structures. Even though a winery comes under the industrial sector it is more of a green structure and at times even as a net-zero and a self-sustained outcome. Wine is addressed as a pleasure drink. To keep it simple, it is all about experiencing the drink. It is considered more than a drink and is perceived to be a bottled emotion. Observing the psychological impact that wine has created amongst us, we could conclude that they fall majorly under the category of senses. It mainly focuses on three aspects. Namely: SOUND, SMELL, and VISION.
A winery is all about user experience and the psychological impacts that are created. Tracing the history of wine, it is evident that it had its origin from the Greeks and was sowed in the Indian soil by Alexander during the early 5th century for which the author Nonnus of Panopolis has mentioned – “my wine is the spear”, in the ancient Greek literature’s last and longest epic poem: the Dionysiaca as an evidence. It is evident for centuries right from its origin, wines have been considered to be a pleasure drink. Different types of glasses are used for different types of wine based on the temperatures that are served to experience the original essence of the drink. Wine is usually combined with a variety of cheese for experiencing the purest taste of the drink. Cheese neutralizes the taste buds and lets us experience the wine at its purest essence.
Wine glasses are usually held by the stem, so that way the hand does not raise the temperature of the wine. Wine tasting is done in a process.
Look: The wine must be viewed by tilting the glass by 45 degrees. The color of the wine tells a lot about it.
Swirl and smell: The next step is to swirl and smell the wine to get its aroma which almost reveals the taste.
Taste: The third step is to taste the wine by holding it for a minute in the mouth and then swallowed. This retains the taste longer.
Think: The last step is to think about the characters of wine like its nature, aroma, etc.
Apart from wine being a pleasure drink it also has numerous benefits when consumed regularly such as reducing the stress level, rate of heart attack, etc.
The most surprising part is that, although India accounts 0.8 percent of the total wine consumption in Asia and ranks 77 in terms of wine consumption in the world as updated by the Indian Law Office – ILO a year back it did bag – “the world’s tastiest wine” in the year 2017 that happened in Paris. The passed the blind test and was an outcome from the Grover Vineyards, Bangalore. Sula is the father of Indian wines as it was the first company to enhance wine production and to bag a place in the world economy in terms of the wine industry.
After all these studies and the ones scheduled I proved others “Even sobers do have a way to explore wine”.