Nov 07: After launching Ramsay Signature Wine brand in the U.S. earlier this year, Michelin-starred chef Gordon Ramsay has launched his own range of Gordon Ramsay Italian Collection in UK, crafted in partnership with the world famous- Chianti-based winemaker Alberto Antonini and UK-based Distributor Benchmark Drinks, writes Subhash Arora who regrets that Chefs and Sports or Bollywood celebrities in India have not yet paid attention to this treasure trove, except Los-Angeles based Vijay Amritraj
Michelin-starred chef Gordon Ramsay is known for cooking food and yelling unprintable expletives. However, the celebrity chef aggressively promoted Alcobev segment recently as he announced a range of his own hard seltzers: Hell’s Seltzer last December and launched his own brand of California wines- Gordon Ramsay Signature Wines earlier this year.
Gordon has now announced the launch of his own range of Italian wines, Gordon Ramsay Italian Collection, created in partnership with UK-based Distributor Benchmark Drinks and Chianti-based renowned winemaker Alberto Antonini. After undergoing development for years, the collection comprises three wines: a red, white and rosé, and is available exclusively at Tesco or online via winedelivered.co.uk. Retail-priced at £10 ($13.75) , they offer an excellent quality at a great price.
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Alberto Antonini, who is a flying winemaker consultant and also owns Poggiotondo Winery in Tuscany, has a stellar reputation as a traditional winemaker with contemporary thinking. The duo took the pioneering decision to blend the grapes from two different regions- Tuscany and Abruzzo. The cross-blending resulted in achieving the flavour and style they desired.
The Intenso Rosso 2020 is a blend of 50 % Tuscan Sangiovese from old vines, and 30 % Montepulciano with 20 % Merlot from Abruzzo. The Elegante Rosato 2020 is 50 % Montepulciano and 15 % Merlot from Abruzzo, blended with 20 % Sangiovese and 15 % Merlot from Tuscany. The Vibrante Bianco 2020 is a blend of 40 % Chardonnay, 20 % Trebbiano, and 15 % Pecorino from Abruzzo, blended with 25 % Vermentino from Tuscany.
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Gordon Ramsay says, “Running a 3 Michelin star restaurant for over 20 years means I have had the joy of tasting some of the finest wines in the world. Wine-making has always fascinated me; it’s a magical process where tradition, passion, and science are blended together and captured in one stunning bottle. Italy and Italian wines have a special place in my heart. When it came to launching my own wine range, it was very important to set the same standards and quality as I expect in my restaurants. It was a huge pleasure to collaborate on this project with Alberto Antonini, one of Italy’s greatest winemakers.”
One hopes and wishes our Indian celebrity chefs were entrepreneurial wine enthusiasts to craft Indian wines that describe wines to go with their style of food and created their own labels since the Bollywood stars have so far failed in this pursuit of passion. Wine might not generate the same level of income as their professional income but this is a passion driven vocation which has attracted stars like Cliff Richard decades ago and in recent times the likes of Kylie Minogue, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt to invest in their labels-with the Godfather Director Francis Ford Coppola being right at the top.
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In India, the only wine crafted by a celebrity has been by Vijay Amritraj, the legendary Tennis Ace who lives in Los Angeles and runs a Tennis Academy in India. He teamed up with Grover Zampa Vineyards and launched in 2014 two labels in the VA Reserve Range. They have been doing reasonably well but he has not shown any interest in expanding the label. One can only hope Celebrity Chefs like Gordon Ramsay will come forward and launch some Indian wines for a restaurant dishing out his style of Indian Cuisine under his name so he might introduce an Indian Collection.
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