All You Need To Know About Chikoo Based Wine By Fruzzante | Stay Tipsy
Over the last few years, India has been going through a revolution when it comes to home grown beverages. When I heard about a local chikoo based wine doing the rounds of the market, I was intrigued to find out more. I got in touch with Priyanka Save and Nagesh Pal, the couple behjind Fruzzante, the country’s first local chikoo based wine. Read on to find out all the whys and hows of chikoo wine in conversation with Priyanka Save!
Talk us through your story – how you started, your journey so far, etc. What gave you the inspiration to brew the first chikoo wine in India?
I was raised in the chikoo orchards of Dahanu-Gholvad which explains why a profound affection for the fruit runs through my veins. The nature of every impactful story stems from tribulation. Ours was a seed borer disease which severely affected the chikoo market as farmers resorted to cutting off their plantations in 2004. It was then that our quest for recognition was met with the ardent desire of revival. Our initial idea was therefore to process chikoo in a package-able form. When we arrived at the conclusion that it is in the nature of chikoos to ferment, we proceeded to brew a cider-style beverage.
We set up our brewery as part of our family’s Hill Zill resort in Bordi, 25 km from Dahanu. While our treasured journey towards becoming the world’s solitary producer of wine made from chikoo has been exceptional to say the least, we are not the kind to rest on our laurels. We want to continue further in aiding the farmers of the market providing them the dire acknowledgement that they deserve. Our journey began from the grassroots and will forever be respectful of that
Run us through all your products.
Apart from our chikoo cider wine, we have also released other variants in the vegan beverage range made in cider style including pineapple, mango and spice garden (cinnamon, ginger and honey with chikoo).
We also have a sparkling white wine from starfruit blended with grapes under the brand name JIWA and a premium honey dessert wine or mead under the brand name ARKA. We further envision working with several other fruits in the future while striving to maintain quality standards.
What is the best and worst aspect of running your business?
The best aspect of running one’s own business would be the liberty to work on one’s own terms. One can derive true pleasure out of their work, making it easy to establish a work-life balance as well. However, it all depends on whether one sees the glass as half-full or its alternative. Hence, the best aspect can mean the worst as well which ultimately depends on mental strength; the fierce competition can allow an unwavering individual to thrive while the other may perish.
What do you think people are looking for today from a home-grown brand such as yours?
People are looking for an authentic identity; they are offered adulterated products left, right and centre in today’s market and hence are looking for honest producers who understand the need of the market and bridge the gap through authentic and tested products.
Apart from this, they expect a sense of understanding, compatibility and reliability from a home-grown brand because the international brands may not possess the same scope to connect with Indian consumers.
How much does the wine cost and where is it available?
The wine MRP is INR 255 for 330ml. The wine is currently available in Dahanu-Bordi and some restaurants in Mumbai.
What’s in the future for Fruzzanté?
Apart from tying up with a few distributors to make a good distribution network in Maharashtra, we further envision working with several other fruits in the future while striving to maintain quality standards.
How does one sign up for a tour, if any?
You can book the tour via our winery resort Hill Zill. The contact details are on our website. We cover everything from wine tours to visiting the orchards and more.