Wineries of Asia

Think Wine, think France, Italy, Australia, South Africa, Chile or the USA. We’re here to tell you that you can also look closer to home and find first class Wine, waiting to be tasted!
Asian Wine is very popular among Wine lovers for their variety in taste and method of fermentation. The most notable producers of Wine, in Asia are India, China, Japan and Thailand. Let’s take you on a tour to the finest wineries from these countries that are definitely worth a visit.

 

India

  • Sula Vineyards
    011

    Image Source: https://goo.gl/Lw2aGY

    Sula Vineyards is India’s most popular winery. Founded in 1999, Sula Vineyards has now developed into a world class winery with a market share of over 70% in India. The winery is open to visitors, who can enjoy a tour, tastings, courses, and fun events including the immensely popular Sulafest that’s held in early February each year. Soliel by La Plage, Goa’s iconic French restaurant, is an added attraction. If you want to extend your stay at Sula, you can rent a room at the cottage called Beyond, to let the scenic beauty of the place calm your senses.

  • Chateau d’Ori
    chateau2
    Image Source: http://goo.gl/in58u2

    Chateau d’Ori had its first harvest in February 2007 and is the second largest winery in the Nashik region after Sula, with 400 acres of vineyards. The winery produces some top quality red Wines and has won a number of awards for them. The state of the art technology employed for the production of the Wines of Chateau d’Ori put it apart from some of the other, lesser known wineries of India.

China

  • Grace Vineyard
    d53dbbf4ff6172c0f542a81ba6b34fbf
    Image Source: http://goo.gl/in58u2

    Grace Vineyard, based in Taiyuan, is one of the largest and best producers of Wine from northwestern China. Named ‘best winery’ 2012 by the Chinese edition of oenophile bible La Revue du Vin de France, the family-owned vineyard in Taigu has only been operational for 15 years. The Wines from the vineyard have won numerous accolades nationally and are expected to carve themselves a niche in the international Wine market soon.

  • Changyu Winery
    chna-shnd-wine-chng-cas-dc03-1
    Image Source: http://goo.gl/hdx0yX

    The modern Wine industry in China owes its advent to the Changyu Winery, which was founded in 1892 and has since been awarded numerous awards, among which is the prestigious Grand Prize at the Panama-Pacific International Exposition in 1915 — for a Brandy, a red Wine and a Vermouth. The winery with its age old Wines and other fermented drinks, has upgraded to more advanced techniques of fermentation and continues to be a haunt for the Wine lovers of China and the rest of the world.

Japan

  • Masuichi-Ichimura Sake Brewery
    masuichi_ichimura_sake_brewing
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/gLcs3e

    The Masuichi-Ichimura Sake Brewery was founded in 1755. This brewery has been instrumental in reviving traditional craft skills, preserving ancient buildings and forming beautification committees in Obuse. Visit the brewery to learn about the numerous methods of brewing Sake. You can also treat yourself to a tasting tour while you are there!
  • Yamanashi Meijo Brewery
    yamanashimaijo1
    Image Source: http://goo.gl/bn0Hwg

    The Yamanashi Meijo Brewery is located at the foot of the Japanese Alps, an area that is well known for the sweetness and freshness of its water. The brewery uses slow fermentation techniques, at a low temperature which give their Sakes their subtleness and freshness of spring water. Another reason to visit the brewery is the stunning scenic beauty surrounding its compounds. Head on for a trip to remember.

 

Thailand

  • Chateau de Loei Winery
    chateau20de20loei20vineyard
    Image Source: http://goo.gl/XxVTMY

    The Chateau de Loei winery was founded in 1995 and is situated at the northern part of Bangkok. Chateau de Loei is one of the first entrepreneurs in the region that has succeeded in building its own brand based on solid, internationally-accepted quality.The winery provides a complete experience to its visitors, which includes Wine tasting, sampling grapes and fresh vegetables from its orchard and farm. Additional facilities include a restaurant, accommodations and a touring route in the vineyard that is open to the public! Take some time out to go visit this beautiful winery on your next trip to busy Bangkok.

  • Khao Yai Winery
    pb-valley-khao-yai-winery
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/S89uLH

    Khao Yai Winery
    sits atop a hill, surrounded by picturesque valleys, which provides it the perfect climate for harvesting Wine quality grapes. The winery is very visitor friendly and visitors are taken on a guided tour of the vineyard and winery before getting a taste of the sweet and fruity vino. For those willing to stay overnight, the winery provides accommodation and has a restaurant that serves Thai and western cuisines. The best time to visit is around March, when the place is dry and cool.

 

Don’t forget to schedule some time to see these wineries for a memorable time on your next trip around the continent. Until then, take a look at our delectable selection of wines here and sate your cravings:)

Journey of Chocolate

That smooth finesse, the miraculous taste of delight, the perfect mood lifter… you could go on and on and never be able to praise chocolate enough.

But worshipers of chocolate, did you know the long journey that chocolate has to go through to finally make that blissful bite of divine deliciousness?

Once you’ve read this, you will appreciate chocolate a tad bit more.

Akosua Boadu harvesting, on her farm in village of Amankwaatia

Image Source: http://goo.gl/yOjL7z

The journey starts with Harvesting.
Although the technique of harvesting cocoa pods in today’s time are all fairly technical, all of the magic of chocolate isn’t lost. The pods are carefully picked, making sure that the rest of the tree isn’t disturbed. They are then slit after which the beans and the pulp are both fermented.

behmor4

Image Source: http://goo.gl/FuUEm6

Once harvested, the beans are cleaned and Roasted.
The chocolatier roasts the beans, and they are crushed to retrieve the ‘nib’. These nibs are then processed, to bring them down to the two main components of the cocoa mass, the cocoa solid, or cocoa powder, and cocoa butter.

swirling-choc_-1024x683

Image Source: https://goo.gl/STXDYv

The cocoa mass is then combined with sugar and milk and Conched.
Varied amounts of milk and sugar are combined with the chocolate liquor to give it its luscious depth. The mixture is then cooled down and conched. Conching is a process where chocolate liquor, milk and sugar are mixed in a large tank, to give the chocolate its smoothness.
tempering-chocolate
Image Source: http://goo.gl/SqBrS1

Once the chocolate is conched, it needs to be Tempered.
The tempering process usually involves controlled speeds of mixing the chocolate, so that it is thoroughly aired, consistent throughout and will dry hard and then cooling the chocolate under monitored temperatures.

So you know now that the bar of chocolate you so dearly hold, has a lot of work put into it. Worth the end result, don’t you think?

Check out our range of delish chocolates here to sate all your chocolate cravings!

Get ready to Fly Free with Us!

Planning exotic vacations, adventurous getaways or sophisticated escapades from the humdrum of life, is something we all indulge in. Sometimes, though, we don’t go through with our plans because travelling can burn real large holes in the pocket.
But worry no more, because Bengaluru Duty Free is bringing you a chance to realise your dreams and get a chance to Fly Free with Us!
Yes, that’s right!

20160303_125756

If your next destination is off shores, via Bengaluru, all you need to do is visit our store, at Terminal 2 at the Kempegowda International Airport, and make a purchase from the John Dewars & Sons Whisky Emporium, we’ve set up:)

DSC02208

Once you make a purchase, you will have to fill up a ticket with your details and enter the lucky draw contest. *You could also begin keeping your fingers crossed.*
We will reimburse travel and lodging costs up to 1.25 lacs for our winner! Isn’t that something?

DSC02211

But hurry, because we’re taking in entries only till April 30, 2016! The draw will be conducted after May 15, 2016 and our two lucky winners will be announced! *secretly hoping it is you, aren’t you?*

DSC02215

So what are you waiting for? Shouldn’t let go of a win-win situation like this, like, ever. You get to get your hands on a beauty of a bottle, with a pick from the John Dewars & Sons Whisky Emporium aaaand maybe even win a trip, free of cost!

 

DSC02227a

So, plan an international trip through Bengaluru and drop by to our store real soon. Let’s see if Lady Luck is on your side!:)
Oh, also, doesn’t the store look absolutely gorgeous? Yeah, we love it too😀

That’s not all, we have a plethora of other amazing products you can bag once you are here. Or, you could even pre-order, and pick up your purchase once you are here. Take a look at our collection with a click at www.bengalurudutyfree.in

Best Chocolate Museums around the World

A good museum continues to thrill you even after you can’t officially be called a child. The same holds true for chocolate as well! So, lovers of chocolate and museums, unite! We’re bringing you the list you’ve never seen before but always needed – the world’s most stunning chocolate museums! Grab a bar and get nibbling… er… reading.

 

1. Cadbury World, Birmingham, England


js70001669

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/hff3fft

Cadbury World, South of Birmingham, tells the story of the Cadbury family and their chocolate business, from the first Easter egg to the construction of the Bournville garden village for factory workers – with free samples along the way.

Grab some Cadbury goodies, here.

  1. Maison Cailler, Broc, Switzerland

dscn1047

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/hedkh5n

With the highest per capita consumption of chocolate in the world, it’s no surprise that Switzerland is on our list. There are heaps of chocolate factories open to visitors, including Maison Cailler in Broc, Gruyère, where you can discover how the good stuff is made. They even offer courses for budding chocolatiers.

Indulge in fine Swiss favourites, here.

3. Choco-Story, Bruges, Belgium

img_5113

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/juaxvkv

No visit to Bruges is complete without sampling a praline – or three – of finest Belgian chocolate. This museum caters to visitors in need of a bit of culture to accompany their daily fix of something chocolatey. It details the history of chocolate without overlooking the importance of tasting. It occupies a historic building on the corner of Sint-Jansplein.

Belgian goodies that will make you beg for more

  1. Museo del Chocolate, Havana, Cuba
Processed with VSCOcam with s3 preset

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/zh8z8sc

Really a cafe with displays related to chocolate making and consumption, this ‘museum’ serves cups of delicious, thick, pure chocolate. Lining up in temperatures of 35 degrees celsius to drink cups of hot chocolate in an air-conditioned interior may seem odd, but it’s worth it.

5. Cologne Chocolate Museum, Germany

colognechocolatemuseum

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/jz4rbvv

Cologne is home to the largest chocolate museum in the world, which sits in a enviable position on the Rhine’s left bank, near the city’s famous cathedral. Access to the museum is via a revolving bridge. A tour of this museum will take you through 3,000 years of chocolate history.

6. Hershey’s Chocolate World, Pennsylvania, USA

hershey-chocolate-world-pa

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/pk9to69

You can’t escape Hershey’s chocolate in the USA and this giant attraction is sure to sate the appetite of the company’s biggest fans – particularly children. Tour the factory and meet the Hershey’s ‘characters’ on a day out to this entertaining Pennsylvania landmark.

7. Museu de la Xocolata, Barcelona, Spain

sagradafamiliaxocolata

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/j6c22qa

If you like chocolate, Barcelona is the place for you. You can drink xocolata desfeta, chocolate thick enough to stand a spoon up in (great for dipping xurros into), see fantastic festive creations and eat unusual dishes such as chocolate with rabbit or squid. To find out how Barcelona’s love affair with chocolate began, visit the Museu de la Xocolata – which has some fantastically elaborate chocolate models on display.

8. Choco-Story Chocolate Museum, Prague, Czech Republic

473203619_fb424413921023958_2048x1365

Image Source: http://tinyurl.com/guj9qho

This pretty Czech museum explores Europe’s love of chocolate and explains the history of the cultivation of the cocoa bean and how the chocolate making process made its way to Europe. Of course, there are lots of delicious samples available as well.

Alright then! Is that you drooling over the list? Finish your bar of chocolate and start planning the trip of your life to these delicious museums! We’d suggest you share this list with some fellow chocolate lovers as well, they’d want to tag along with you.

Oh, also… you would need some chocolate for the journey, right? Why don’t you take a look at the marvelous chocolates we have at our store that you can pre order or pick up? Click here and feast your eyes!

 

Our favourite Indian Whiskeys

Of all the things a Whisky lover would do, one can never be as bold as to claim just a few favourites and assert them champions over the rest – it would be like picking your favourite child so to speak. At Bengaluru Duty Free, we understand that this could be quite tricky. Thus, we hope to help you assemble your own collection of the best Indian Whiskies in the world. These should definitely make it into your liquor cabinet for when you’re in the mood for some of that ‘desi daaru’.

We also proud to showcase two of the finest, award-winning Indian Single Malt Whiskies that are now renowned all over the world for their smooth and unrivalled taste.

Amrut

india_amr61

Image Source: https://goo.gl/bPbgEh

The founders of the Amrut distillery aptly named it “Amrut” after the Elixir of Life as per Indian Mythology.

Single Malt Whisky by Amrut is a product of years of research that ensure that this Whisky matches world standards. Made from selected Indian barley, grown at the feet of the Himalayas, nurtured by the waters flowing there and cultivated using age old agricultural practices. It is distilled in small batches to preserve the natural aroma and matured in oak barrels in a unique tropical condition. It is hands down the best Whisky India has ever produced.

Paul John
paul-john-release-1024x671
Image Source: http://goo.gl/CV1Nb0

The many personalities of Goa are captured in each of Paul John’s creations. The warm temperatures certainly help mature the Whiskies faster, giving them their own, signature taste and flavour.

 

Paul John Single Malt or Brilliance is a Single Malt Whisky made in Goa which goes through the traditional whisky making process. Paul John Whiskies are considered delectable with a lot of character and intensity on the tasting notes. One of world’s most celebrated Whiskies, this one goes best with the traditional Goan dessert Bebinca.

 

McDowell’s No 1
mcdowell-s-no1-1-liter
Image Source: http://goo.gl/N72p4n

One of the top selling brands in India is the Mc Dowell’s No 1 Whisky. The brand was launched in 1968 by the United Spirits Limited and comes in variants like Reserve, Diet Mate and Platinum.

Officers Choice
62
Image Source: http://goo.gl/gSWDLN

A brand by Allied Blenders and Distillers (ABD), known as “OC” by the common man in India, is the second most selling Whisky brand in India, which is made by blending the best of Indian neutral spirits with Malt Spirits.

Bagpiper
bagpiper_75cl_11
Image Source: http://goo.gl/yW2hdE

This Whisky brand by Diageo-USL is the next on the list of the most selling Whiskies in India. This is also one of the top 100 brands in the world and is a sought after drink for most avid Whisky fans.

Royal Stag
lovely-package-royal-stag
Image Source: 
http://goo.gl/vdDh9c

Seagram’s Royal Stag was released in the Indian market in 1995. The brand is owned by the second largest liquor company in the world – Pernod Ricard. It blends Indian grain based spirits with imported Scotch Malts. It is now available in the Barrel Select expression as well.

Original Choice
9_1339649959_640x640
Image Source: http://goo.gl/QognJI

This brand is owned by John Distilleries. This is another well known brand in the country and is one among the top 20 best selling Whiskies in the world.

Old Tavern
oldtaverinwhisky_600x600_20150411180307
Image Source: https://goo.gl/U61bPw

Another popular choice among Whiskey brands in India is Old Tavern, which holds a considerable market share in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

Hayward’s Fine
haywards-fine
Image Source: http://goo.gl/l1dmmc

Hayward’s Fine is another brand owned by Diageo-USL, which has earned a place on this list. It is an economically priced brand, which is gaining increasing popularity not only in India, but also in the Middle East and Africa.

Imperial Blue
d9215b745322b54bfe401e3e49f647ee
Image Source: https://goo.gl/J29fh3

Also known as Seagram’s Imperial Blue, this brand gives a fine blend of Scotch Malts with Indian grain spirits. The brand was launched by Seagrams in 1997. This is one of the favourite Whisky brands among the middle class. The “men will be men” campaign has really taken this brand to a different dimension and placed the brand well in the Indian alcohol market.

If Indian Whisky is not your first choice, then you’d love to explore our vast collection of imported Whiskies, here: http://goo.gl/bo0a4m

 

The Best Wines of 2015

Kick-starting 2016, with a list of extraordinary wines reminds us that there are a few diligent Winemakers that we need to be grateful to.

Wine, like all fine things in life, has good days and bad days and seems like these 10 Wines were caught on a pretty good day:

  1. Yangarra Estate High Sands Grenache 2010

w1

Image Source: http://exci.to/1KoNwwC

Crafted from a single, lonesome plot of old vine Grenache dating back to 1946, the Wine exhibits a sour cherry over dried herbs on the nose. This Australian Wine has a rather captivating taste is like silk but only much more complex. This versatile Wine can be served at a big dinner party and is ideal before and during dinner too.

  1. Tenute Silvio Nardi Brunello di Montalcino 2003

w2

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1onlSWf

For those who like their Wines fuller, a little more voluptuous, this classic option hailing from Montalcino, Italy, also in its prime is quite a serious choice to opt for. If you give it a tender swirl you may be able to get a whiff of the dancing fruits in its midst. This Wine goes great with some seafood like prawns, shrimps or even crab.

  1. Marques de Riscal Rioja Baron de Chirel Reserva 2010

w3

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1XwRc0X

One place to watch out for ultra-premium Wines is Rioja, Spain and this wine is proof of that fact. Composed of a satiny texture, the decadent spice on the nose adds to the texture with much grace. The subliminal notes include dried cherry, tobacco, forest and dark chocolate. This elegant Wine can be served with roasted red meats like lamb or pork.

  1. Aia Vecchia “Lagone” Toscana IGT 2012

w4

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1XwReGf

Another classic, a perfect blend of Merlot and Cabernet sauvignon and Cabernet franc from Bolgheri in Tuscany, Italy is a delightful Wine. Packed with abundant black cherry, dried herbs and spice over vanilla this is the kind of Wine you can drink with any kind of meal. We recommend that you must pop it open and pour it at the earliest and raise a toast to be able to drink this delicious masterpiece.

 

  1. Cowhorn Vineyard Spiral 36 Southern Oregon 2014

w5

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1ooBVUn

This blend of viognier, roussanne, and marsanne yields a ripe and succulent wine with notes of hazelnuts and lemon cream. With tropical fruits on the palate, good acidity keeps things interesting. Made from Demeter Certified Biodynamic and Stellar Certified Organic vineyards, it ages spectacularly too.

  1. Suavia Le Rive Bianco Veronese IGT 2011  

w6

Image Source: http://bit.ly/217UMkh

This white wine is abundant with peach notes, cardamom, exotic fruits and mineral threads and offers a juicy treat. Made from over-ripe 100% Garganega grapes, the wine has some residual sugar, but it’s not obvious or oversweet because of the good natural acidity. This wine is perfect with pepperoni pizza.

  1. Don Melchor Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon 2011

w7

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1LsOcfi

Wines from Chile may not have come across your way as often but we can vouch for them completely. The wine is named after the founder of Concha y Toro winery, Don Melchor, and is much like a French Bordeaux, only more intense and flavourful with notes of black cherry and mocha. The tannins hit the spot with the way they have been sculpted and can easily age for another decade or so.

  1. Buty Rediviva of the Stones, Rockgarden Estate 2012

w8

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1Q0BVUN

Buty happens to be one of the first wineries in the Washington state that started with the intriguing blend combinations of syrah and cabernet sauvignon. This wine is cultivated from certified organic grapes in Walla Walla and displays lacy notes of lavender folded into rich earth and dark cherry notes. It’s pure sophistication in the glass with a supple feel and richness.

  1. Fasi Crest Syrah, Private Reserve 2010

w9

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1mGxtyB

The uniqueness of this Wine lies in the fact that it is made out of 100% organic grapes and hail from a comparatively unknown region in California called Madera. The San Joaquin River offers cooling influence on the vineyards, keeping the ripe blackberry fruit fresh and elegant. It comprises notes from anise and tobacco and are composite with a nice freshness and long finish.

  1. Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port 1994

w10

Image Source: http://bit.ly/1PPPT8i

The 1994 vintage has been proclaimed by growers and producers as one of the finest of the last century. It is a very preciously aged Wine from Portugal and carries this amazing finesse with its moderately sweet but full-bodied feel. In a word, it’s brilliant!

If all this talk about Wine has made you yearn for a bottle, browse through our collection of Wines and we are sure you’ll be surprised to find a few winners on our shelves. Pre book a bottle here: bit.ly/17A3P6X

 

Audiophiles 101: A journey into the world of headphones

Whether you are craving high energy tunes to juice up your workout, or private listening at home or at work, an adrenaline-pumping gaming experience or are just looking for an amazing sound system or accessory to express your personal style, we have something for everyone. The first aspect you must narrow down to when searching for a pair of headphones is deciding which form factor you want. This decision should be based on not only where you will be using them but rather what type of music you are listening to. You may choose full size headphones or in-earbuds, wired or wireless, that’s up to you. But this guide will help familiarize you with the features that you need to look at for before you buy a pair of headphones.

We understand that the size, type and technology of the headphones are all crucial to your decision but it’s extremely important to demystify the features and get accustomed to the headphone-vocabulary. Here we have a list of the key features you need to consider when finding the perfect pair of headphones.

  • Bass: Even at its very best, headphone bass is never the sort of heavy hitting experience you literally feel from massive speakers or subwoofers, but many manufacturers do custom tune their “signature sound” to emphasize the lower frequencies, however at the cost of instrument separation and natural delivery. Earbuds are tiny and portable, but except for a couple of high-end models they can’t compete with full-size, over-the-ear headphones for deep bass response or visceral dynamic range.

sony-headphones

Image source: http://bit.ly/1nSdrSv

 

  • Comfort and weight: Assessing sound quality is always a subjective exercise, but the only way to judge comfort is to put them on and listen for at least 10 minutes. Do the earpads exert too much pressure on your ears? Headphones that enclose or cover your ears can get uncomfortably hot, but you’ll have to wear them for a while to find out. Some of the bigger sealed models with cushy leather pads are the worst offenders. Pro-style headphones are comparatively beefier and can feel uncomfortably heavy after hours of use. Lighter headband-style headphones are almost always more comfortable than heavier ones. Even if they’re not, they’re at least less of a hassle to carry around.

hed1

Image source: http://bit.ly/1TNCliI

 

  • Durability: There’s no reason a headphone should be treated as disposable technology. Unlike almost everything else in the realm of consumer electronics, this year’s headphones won’t be obsolete six months or a year from now. In fact, there’s no reason a good pair of headphones can’t last for the better part of a decade. Be sure to assess the build quality of your prospective headphones. Some earbuds and portable devices are relatively fragile, for instance. If the headphones fold up for easy storage, are the hinges robust, or will they fall apart in a month or two? Don’t forget to examine that the earpads and earbuds will get extensive wear and tear over the life of the headphones.

yT3k9MR

Image source: http://bit.ly/1QmipOo

  • Cable dressing and length: Most stereo headphones have just one cable, usually attached to the left earpiece (sometimes called single-sided cabling). Some models and all earbuds use a Y-cable that connects to both earpieces (double-sided). The actual cable plug, meanwhile, is usually one of two designs: a straight I-plug or an angled L-plug; the latter may be useful if your portable player has a side- or bottom-mounted headphone jack.

Bose-AE2-5-Foot-Detachable-Cable

Image source: http://bit.ly/1XcUypN

If you are an audio-freak who is looking to buy a decent pair of headphones, do keep all these aspects in mind and don’t forget to log on to our website at http://www.bengalurudutyfree.in/Index.aspx and find yourselves a pair of headphones that will certainly fit into your requirements and cover all these aspects.