Vinod Pandey, EAM – food & beverage, Taj Bengal has always had a soft spot for wine, and an impeccable sense of organisation. As F&B manager, Taj West End, he put together some fascinating food and wine events, pairing Bordeaux wines with Indian food at Masala Klub. Chateau Palmer, Chateau Mouton-Rothschild, Chateau D’Issan were among some of the big names whose top brass visited, introduced their wines and were wined and dined at the Taj.
Pandey’s latest wine endeavour, along with his GM, K. Mohanchandran in Kolkata, has been to organize a mega wine event, the International Vine & Food Experience,on April 11 & 12th at Taj Bengal. The 2 day event saw 300 registered guests attend days of tastings and talks. Popular were the wine tastings in a series of master classes by biggies in the Indian wine industry, including Alessio Secci of Fratelli, Adrian Pinto of Pernod Ricard, Karishma Grover of Grover, Cecelia Oldne of Sula, Abhay Kewadkar of Four Seasons. Also, focused tasting sessions with Drappier Champagne, Saint Clair Sauvignon Blanc, Berigner Chardonnay, Tentua di Velgiano (Italian biodynamic wines) and Spanish Faustino wines. Not to mention one on Canadian ice wines by sommelier Keith Edgar.
The weekend wound up with a four course gala dinner headlined by celebrity chef Mark Thuet.
We hope this is the start of many such wine-centric wekends around the country….cheers, Vinod Pandey and Taj Bengal!