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Posted: Sunday, 11 October 2020 09:55

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Obituary: Kapil Sekhri of Fratelli Wines Passes Away due to Cardiac Arrest

Oct 11: The news is dark, shocking and unbearable for most people in and out of the Indian wine industry- KAPIL SEKHRI, founder director and the Force behind Fratelli Vineyards, is no more. He passed away last evening at Fortis Hospital after suffering a massive cardiac arrest, reports Subhash Arora who laments the death of the man with huge passion and dedication for wine and who wanted to take wine culture in India forward through high quality wines

Kapil Sekhri passed away last night after he had gone for an evening jog in his lawns after a family celebration (his son’s 18th birthday) and suffered a massive cardiac arrest. The servant saw him motionless and he was taken to Fortis Hospital but was declared dead on arrival, according to sources. The 46-year old Kapil leaves behind his wife Pooja and two young sons.

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When you think Fratelli Wine or Fratelli Vineyards, the first word that comes to your mind is, KAPIL SEKHRI. He was totally behind the Fratelli project and the face of Fratelli. The project was so close to his heart that he was on the road for most part of a month- he was always planning and executing new ideas for pushing ahead- the most ambitious of the seven partners that constituted Fratelli-the latest one being TILT- wine in the can for the millennial, in an effort to open a new market.

The Indian wine industry is totally shaken up with this unexpected and sudden loss. May his soul rest in peace and give the much needed strength to the family of the bereaved to bear the shock.

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I had met Kapil about 12 years ago. I visited a Lunch party thrown by a friend for his son’s wedding. I was pleasantly surprised to find delicious Indian wines being served. Exposed primarily to Sula and Grover, I was pleased to meet his brother Gaurav Sekhri (who is a partner in Fratelli) and father Bhupinder Sekhri who were known to my friend and gave me the scoop about the project and how Kapil had been spearheading the project with the other Fratelli (brothers) in Italy and 2 in Akluj.

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I met him shortly thereafter and was impressed by his passion for wine and his ambition to become one of the top two producers in India.  I have met him many times since then and was impressed with his complete positivity and optimism about the wine industry and its future, He would often challenge my figures in delWine about who was number 2 (vis-a vie Grover) but respected my sense of reporting. He was the man behind Sette, the signature brand that he nurtured and after launching in 2009 brought out different vintages, even in magnums for vertical tastings.

He collaborated with Steven Spurrier to bring out the MS range, and with Jean Charles Boisset to launch a joint label J’NOON in March 2018, making it the most expensive wine in India. He had recently launched another of his pet projects- the canned wines- TiLT and Noi Spritzer. In fact, just a couple of days ago, he gave me quotes for the wines that he was promoting with all his heart.

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He was a health freak and would indulge in vigorous exercise daily. His diet was also very controlled and according to his health plan. He was perfectly fit making the incident even more shocking and incomprehensible.

He was fond of good things in life including fine wine. He loved cigars with his friends and was known to have even formed a Cigar Club to share good times with friends and relax with them, whenever he found time away from Fratelli.

The sense of shock is visible through the industry. Rajeev Samant, Founder CEO of Sula Vineyards, says, ‘It's shocking and very sad news. Kapil has been such an important part of our wine industry and did amazing things with Fratelli in a very short time, through true passion, dedication and immense hard work. I had a lot of respect for him and we are really going to miss him. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and near and dear ones and the entire Fratelli family.’

Surely, everyone is as shocked and their thoughts and prayers are with his family. A massive shock for the Fratelli family. May his Soul Rest in Peace!!

Cremation is at the electric crematorium at Lodhi at 10 am today.

For another related Article, please visit:

DWC Dinner: Judgement at Q’la with Fratelli Wines

Subhash Arora

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 Comments:

 
 

Steven Spurrier Says:

 

Dear Subhash, My dear friend Kapil Sekhri’s death represents the greatest possible loss to the Indian Wine Industry. One recognises pioneers like the Grover Family, Rajeev Samant of Sula and others, but Kapil was the brightest star in the firmament of what could and should be a major source of pride for the subcontinent. He combined the highest intelligence with a personal, driving ambition for Fratelli that embraced every member of the company from top to bottom. My personal contribution with Piero Masi in creating the M/S range was a total pleasure and right from the start I became part of the family. Kapil leaves behind him an impeccable reputation for everything that is good in the wine business and most sadly he leaves the future he envisaged which built on this which may now remain un-realised. We will not see his like again.This is a very great blow and occasion of great sadness.Best regards, Steven.

Posted @ October 11, 2020 16:10

 

Jean-Charles- Boisset Says:

 

This is the hardest message I have to send to all of us to recognize tonight the departure of our dearest friend Kapil....our most fabulous partner in life, business & even more importantly....the pure extension of our family and closest & intimate circle ... our true friend. As we say...a man dies before he is fully born...this is how I feel with my best friend Kapil....what an incredible, alive, dynamic, extraordinaire and fabulous man....fantastic personality, a true entrepreneur and naturally a catalyst of life to all of us ! The endless promoter of India, its people, personalities, ideologies and of course its fantastic savoir faire...at large....and when it came to wine....its know how to become one of the very best in the world...he convinced all of us and had us believe in the dream that has come true today....we created together J'NOON with Puja, Gina,Leigh Ann & Patrick and his family that has become the finest of all wines in India....thanks to Kapil and his incredible vision and determination to craft the very best of all elixir of all gods...thank you Kapil for showing us the way as what we created is the very best of all expression ever done in India. As Gandhi said "where there is love, there is life !"....as Kapil had it with his family, wife Puja & children , and of course closest friends! Our friendship has no age, limit nor death...our souls were on fire to create & craft the best of what India has to offer....our adored country! We believed so much in Kapil’s dream that we adopted it....his soul was on fire for his family, his closest circle of friends and of course his wine vision.... Love is something that finds you....as the greatest gift of life is friendship and I can say, we proudly received it ! True friendship is very rare and I can say, We found it with Kapil & Puja and all our family together with their children.... Kapil has lived such a meaningful life....and this is how we feel about Kapil....this is only the beginning.... Kapil dies of having lived....and he is with us Now and Forever.... To friendship, love and forever magical moments & memories together.... A friend who dies , I feel it Is something of me who dies...

Posted @ October 11, 2020 15:00

 

Minnie Menon Says:

 

Deeply shocked to hear the tragic news about Kapil Sekhri ' s sudden death .I had not had the pleasure of meeting him .But was going to make his acquaintance very shortly . He had so much more to offer . May His soul RIP. Yours sincerely Minnie Menon Chennai President ,Terroir The Madras wine club .

Posted @ October 11, 2020 13:37

 
       
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