Posts Tagged ‘Nine Hills Wine’

Spruce up your Easter with Wine

Easter Sunday is that special time of the year when friends and family gather to celebrate and enjoy a fancy meal together. Traditional Easter menus comprise glazed ham or roasted lamb, spring veggies and chocolate bunnies. We have a wine pairing for each of these food items.

Appetizers or Salads

Start with a white wine that is light and whets your appetite. If you are starting your dinner with salads or light sea food dishes, Sauvignon Blanc is an ideal choice. The pale golden nectar of Nine Hills Sauvignon Blanc with pronounced aromas of passion fruit, pineapple and fresh lime will evoke the pleasures of a balmy summer.


Main Course

Glazed ham has sweet topping while the actual meat is salty. Hence, the best wine to complement it should have sweet fruity notes to match the saltiness of the ham and enough acidity to support the combination of both sweet and salty flavors of the ham. You can keep sipping the Nine Hills Wine Sauvignon Blanc which you took at the start of the meal. If you are partial to red wine, Nine Hills Shiraz is the perfect pick.


For the roasted lamb, stick to Cabernet Sauvignon. Nine Hills Wine’s Cabernet Sauvignon has enough fruit and tannins to handle the complex meaty flavors of the lamb.


For a dish of stuffed chicken breast, Pinot Noir or a local white Zinfandel, which is a pink wine, is the best choice.



As traditional Easter desserts make the maximum use of coconut, pair it with a Nine Hills Chenin Blanc. Nibble on chocolate cupcakes or bunnies with a classic port. For Indian desserts that are particularly rich with ghee and sugar, Nine Hills Wine’s Viognier is the best recommendation.


Wine pairing is an art of discovering your palate and preference. No food is off-limit to wines. Try out different wines with Easter meal to find out your taste. A sumptuous meal shared with friends and family over good wines is all you need to add festivity to any holiday.


Happy Easter Day!


An Italian Dinner At Home

The week has been stressful, with loads of things to do, both at home and at work. By evening today, every single muscle in the body will refuse to budge. What do you need to shed the stress piled up over the week/month? A combination of flavorful, aromatic and healthy Italian dinner cooked lazily at home and some wine should do the trick.

Insalata and Antipasti

Start with a simple bruschetta made of fresh tomatoes and mozzarella. Pair it with aromatic and fruity white wines like Chenin Blanc or Viognier.

Throw in a Caprese salad made from fresh tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, basil, salt, pepper and olive oil. Pair it with a Chenin Blanc. Highly acidic Sauvignon Blanc surprisingly pairs well with tomatoes. Try our Nine Hills Chenin Blanc or Sauvignon Blanc with this famous insalata.


Pasta and Risotto

If you are preparing hearty red meat sauce pasta, go for a Tuscan wine (Chianti) made from Sangiovese grapes as it has enough tannin to dance well with the tangy tomato sauce and the richness to complement the red meat. Closer home you can try full bodied dry or semi dry red wines like Nine Hills Cabernet or Shiraz with soft tannins.

And if you are in the mood for Pasta in Alfredo sauce, a Sauvignon Blanc will do wonders for the silky cream sauce. The wine cuts through the Alfredo sauce, while the herbal notes of the wine add a spring of freshness to the dish.

Try your hand at creamy risotto with mushrooms. This deceptively simple to prepare, Mushroom Risotto, is a great example of a dish that lends itself to either a red or white wine. With the strong earthiness of the mushrooms, a Shiraz that has similar strong flavors and a hint of earth would be perfect, but a pungent style of Sauvignon Blanc could be a delicious alternative if you are in the mood for a white wine.


No Italian meal can be complete with its signature desert, Tiramisu, with its layers of coffee-soaked savoiardi biscuits and sweet mascarpone cheese.


So spread your favorite table cloth, fill a crystal vase with fresh perfumed flowers, light some aromatic candles and put on some Italian music to bring the sunny spirit of the Italian countryside into your home. Now savor your home cooked Italian food with wine, of course!

Three cheers to “la Dolce Vita”!

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Phillip Deverell, our consultant viticulturist, came visitng

Philip Deverell, our Viticulturist visited India and our Nine Hills Vineyards during the harvest time in Feb-March where his skills and experience were utilized to further develop the viticulture capabilities of the vineyard.

Philip holds a Bachelor of Land Management Viticulture from the University of Sydney. On his various international assignments, Philip’s exposure to a variety of vineyards and wine production styles around the world developed his knowledge not only in different production techniques for high quality vines and wines but also a broad knowledge of vine varieties.


We, at Nine Hills Wine, lapped up the opportunity to meet Philip in person and gain some firsthand knowledge about vines and wines.


Q – Could you brief us on your role in the wine producing process at the Nine Hills Wines?


Philip –Nine Hills has a focus on producing quality wines that start in the vineyard itself. The team at Nine Hills work with our growers throughout the year to ensure that the grapes grown meet the quality and standard required by the Nine Hills wine making team. This process must be year round as there is only one vintage every year and if a mistake is made in growing the grapes, it may result in a reduction in quality.

There is a focus to produce fruit which exhibits varietal character and this can only be done from vineyards which are well managed. Any new growers must have their vineyard reviewed before supplying to see if it meets our standards. We would rather not harvest fruit from a below standard vineyard than harvest it and make sub standard wine.


Q – What is the purpose of this India visit?


Philip –My purpose is to review the current growing season and inspect the vineyards prior to harvest. It is important to inspect each vineyard to taste and assess the fruit. This is the first step in the wine making process as this will influence some of the techniques used by the wine maker.


Q – How are the wines for the current year shaping up?


Philip –Wines are still undergoing fermentation so it is very early in the whole process but the ferments are looking good and are exhibiting good flavors and aromas.


Q – Are the vines looking promising?


Philip –The vineyards are very clean and are free of pest and disease which is ideal at this stage. The vines are showing good ripeness and period of cooler weather earlier in the month has allowed the flavors to accumulate. Whilst we are early in vintage the scene is set for one of good quality.


Q- What challenges do you foresee?


Philip –The weather is warming a little which means that the ripeness will increase at a faster rate. This means that the team will have to work quickly to harvest the grapes at their optimum. Nonetheless, this is a nice challenge to have rather than having to deal with the threat of looming rain.


Q – What is your overall feel after this trip?


Philip –Picking grapes is a special time; it is the culmination of the growers’ and viticultural teams’ effort for the year and the beginning of the effort for the wine makers. The 2012 vintage for Nine Hills looks very promising.

Coming straight from the horse’s mouth, Nine Hills Wines is looking forward to an excellent vintage in 2012.



The Two Worlds Of Wine – Old and New

The old maxim says ‘Great wines are made in the vineyard’. Nonetheless, there’s a divide between “New World” and “Old World” when figuratively these terms are used to describe viticulture or wine making practices.


The term ‘New World’ wine is attached to the wines coming from countries, such as the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, South Africa or Argentina who began producing wines only after European colonization. In contrast, ‘Old World’ wine has been made and savored in the European and the Mediterranean countries like France, Italy, Spain, and Germany for over thousands of years.


One is curious how different it can get between the two worlds then. We give you the story…..


In Viticulture

  • Over centuries, the Old World wine regions have developed viticultural techniques and practices adapted to their unique climates and landscapes. In the Old World, vine density is higher and plantings are done at close proximity while in the New World, one would find lower vine density and more spacing between the plantings. This has enabled mechanization of some processes e.g. mechanical pruning and harvesting.


  • Old World producers draw upon their centuries of wine production and inherited wisdom. They hand prune and hand pick their harvest to ensure the best quality wines. On the other hand, New World producers experiment with new wine styles and innovative technologies. This helps them to respond to changing market needs faster. For example, they introduced new wine closures and packaging, such as screw cap, driven purely by consumer needs.



In Wine making

  • Old World wines are more traditional and ‘terroir’ driven whereas New World wines are typically bolder and fruit forward, in general more varietal driven.


  • Old World wine making,with its focus on ‘terroir’, places more emphasis on the role of ‘mother-nature’ in determining wine quality and how well a wine highlights the traits of the place where it originated. In contrast, the New World philosophy generally places more emphasis on the winemaker and the appropriate use of scientific and technological best practices to bring out the fruit flavors of a wine.


  • Wine regions in an Old World country are generally defined around a particular wine style and the same grape (red or white) may be grown to produce several different wines within a region. For example, Bordeaux and Burgundy are wine producing regions in France after whom the wines are named. As New World regions have gained the understanding of what variety grows best where,they are now focusing on particular grape varieties and the development of wine styles that are unique to the region.



Although some traditionalists believe that Old World wines are superior to New World wines, qualitatively, there is no evidence to believe that Old World wines are better than New World wines or vice versa. What is true is that they are different. Old World wines are more tannic and earthy with more layers of complexity while New World wines are bold, fruity and oaky.

In recent times, the globalization of wine has helped in blurring the dividing line as New World wine producers discover ‘terroir’ and Old World producers discover ‘fruit’.


Old or new, we love all. Just give us the Wine!

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Wine and Music. Nay, Music and Wine.

February 27, 2012 Leave a comment

“Madder Music, Stronger Wine”

Simple words and yet so true. It is believed that music influences the way wine tastes. That must be the reason why professional wine tastings are done in absolute silence. Like with food and glassware, music pairing is also gaining popularity as wine lovers believe that playing a certain type of music can enhance the way wine tastes.

Listen to Mozart while drinking your favourite Nine Hills Wine Cabernet. And then switch to Metallica with the same wine. Does the wine taste different? It is not that we notice new flavors when the music changes. The flavors are there all along, but the music makes us change the way we perceive them. Some music makes us pay more attention to astringency present in the wine while with other music; we tend to ignore the strong flavors and tannins in the wine.

Nine Hills Wine’s Cabernet Sauvignon is most affected by “powerful and heavy” music and Chardonnay by “zingy and refreshing” sounds. Pinot noir tastes amazing with Mozart.

Open a bottle of your heavy and full-bodied red and you will feel like listening to soulful and melancholic music.Experiment it yourself; invite a few friends, open your favorite red wine while listening to soulful ghazals and take a trip down the memory lane. There is something about red wine and ghazals that makes you feel nostalgic and makes those old forgotten memories resurface.

And why is it that on listening to jazzy upbeat numbers while drinking champagne pulls out more and more layers of creamy nuttiness and fresh flavors of luscious, ripe grapes from the champagne.

Feel like having white wine? Put some country and western music. Simple chords and country instruments like guitars, banjos and harmonicas will make your wine drinking a memorable affair.

So what are you waiting for? Fill a glass of wine as per your mood and put on some music accordingly and unwind after a long day. Life’s good!

Do you know the right glass for your wine?

February 21, 2012 Leave a comment

Ever wondered why champagne is served in a flute and not in a coffee mug? Simply because wine is passion, it represents fine living, etiquette and all the good things in life. As surprising as it sounds the wine, connoisseurs believe that the glass you choose has a tremendous impact on the quality and intensity of aromas. The acquisition of excellent stemware is the first step towards improving your wine experience.

Stemware Basics:

Most common wine glasses are red wine glasses, white wine glasses, and champagne flutes. Then there are Sherry wine glasses too. A new concept of Wine tumblers (without stems) is also gaining popularity.

Red Wine Glasses

Red wine glasses have rounder, wider bowl, so that oxidation takes place rapidly altering the flavor and aroma of the wine.

Bordeaux glass: Appropriate for hearty and full bodied red wines, like Nine Hills Wine’s Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah/Shiraz. This glass has a long stem, broad bowland narrower opening. The shape of the bowl concentrates the aromas and flavors while the narrow opening allows the wine to go to the back of the mouth.


Burgundy glass: Broader than the Bordeaux glass but has a narrower opening than the body. The apple shaped bowl works well for fine and delicate wines like Pinot Noir that need a huge area in which to gather their aromas. This style of glass directs wine to hit the tip of the tongue.


White Wine Glasses

Tulip glass: A tulip shaped glass is characterized by a deep bowl that is narrow at the bottom, broad in the middle and narrow at the opening. The stem of the wine glass is shorter than the average wine glass. The narrow opening preserves the crisp, clean flavor of the white wines as it reduces the rate of aeration.Perfect for Nine Hills Wine’s Chenin Blanc and Sauvignon Blanc!!


Champagne Flutes

Ideal for Champagne or Sparkling wine, flutes are tall to allow the proper development of bubbles. It has a narrow and tall bowl while the mouth is small to keep the wine sparkling longer in the glass. The long stem allows you to hold the glass without warming the liquid inside. The design of the flute adds to the aesthetic appeal of champagne as it allows the bubbles to travel further due to the narrow opening.


Sherry Glasses

Sherry glass is used to drink sherry wines and also port wines.

The stem of a Sherry glass is shorter than other wine glass varieties. The bowl is broad at the bottom, long but tapers into a narrow mouth. The narrow opening is meant to enhance the aroma of the sherry wine.


Stem-less Wine Glasses

With time, a new concept of stem-less (without stem) wine glasses has evolved. This modern innovation is often criticized by traditional wine lovers and wine connoisseurs as they believe that these glasses do nothing to enhance the aroma or flavour of the wine. These glasses affect the temperature of the wine as they are nursed in hand. Also these glasses do not have the same visual appeal as the traditional varieties.

Good glasses are important for the wine tasting experience and will ultimately define whether you will like the wine or not. So leave the coffee mug for the coffee and drink your favorite wine in the right glass.


Say it with Wine this Valentine’s

February 13, 2012 Leave a comment

Chocolates, flowers, stuffed toys are passé! Celebrate the Valentine’s Day this year with your sweetheart in style.  And what better way to ignite romance than with wine. Yes, surprise your loved one by gifting him/her a bottle of wine and see the expression change on his/her face.

Here are a few ways to win your sweetheart all over again. Be it a romantic date at a restaurant or a candlelight dinner in the comfort of your home, wine is the perfect way to say “I Love You”. If you have never done it before then this is the golden opportunity to commence your tryst with wine, the manna from heaven. Be it red, white or rosé, wine tingles the taste buds, liberates the mind, heightens the senses and sets the mood.



A declaration of undying love or a rekindling of passion in your relationship, a glass of champagne is the ideal choice. The effervescence of the sparkling wine puts you in high spirits. Moreover, it pairs well with a whole range of romantic and gourmet foods.

If you are planning to take your valentine for a romantic candle light dinner, make sure to take a reservation well in advance at a restaurant where they serve good country wines. Select your cuisine and then consult the restaurant’s Sommelier (if they have one) or the manager (who should have a good knowledge of wine pairing) for the perfect bottle of wine to go with your food. Now celebrate an amazing Valentine’s Day with your date over good food and some even better wine.It is the perfect formula for love.

If eating out is not your style, then rest assured, this is just the way to invite romance. You can surprise your valentine by cooking up an intimate dinner for two in the cozy warmth of your home. Buy a bottle or two of good wine; our Nine Hills Sauvignon Blanc or Shiraz Rosé should do the trick. Now pop the cork, share the wine over your favorite love songs and leave the rest to cupid.

Valentine Tip:As red is the color of Valentine, impress your date with a red wine. Nine Hills’ award winning reds Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon will do the honors quite nicely.

Say it in style, say it with wine. Cheers!