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Delhi Wine Club

Posted: Wednesday, 14 April 2010 11:56

Feature: Less Travelled World Wine Route

Visiting over 300 wineries around the globe, selecting a bottle of their best wine for an auction and donating the proceeds to charity sounds like fun but it’s a lot of hard work too, as our Mumbai Correspondent Malathi Natarajan discovered on meeting the duo passing through India recently on their course of unusual travel through the world of wine.

Young professionals craving the simple or different life style are leaving the stereo typed work to help others rather than themselves. Whether it is to join a charitable organization or raise funds, professionals are picking up their backpacks and showing us that the work-hard-play-hard way of life is not all it is cracked up to be.

What could be more creative and exciting than visiting over 300 wineries around the globe, selecting a bottle of their best wine for an auction and donating the proceeds to a charity!  Sounds like an awful lot of fun but it surely is a lot of hard work too!

This is what Georges Janssens and Anja Cheriakova have been up to, over the past few months. Having grown up in Napa valley, with his mom working at Robert Mondavi winery and dad in the social sector, Georges could not have come up with a better idea in terms of what he wanted to do after graduating from Utrecht University in the Netherlands.

Joining him in this endeavor is Anja who is originally from Belarus and immigrated to the Netherlands where she is currently Master’s student at the same university.

The idea of a world-wine charity tour was conceived in 2003 under the name ‘Vignes sans Frontieres’ -Vines without Borders, by Cécile and Jérôme de Nomazy. This French couple set the foundation for the novel concept, a great idea which would later be repeated by other young people over the years.

Georges and Anja were selected for the 2010 tour wine tour and the wines collected during the tour shall be made available to bidders at an auction most likely be held during the spring of 2011 in the Napa Valley of California. The proceeds shall be donated to Lao Rehabilitation Foundation Inc.

The two of them launched their tour in Russia on 2nd January and went on to visit Mongolia and China in January before stopping in Laos in February where they volunteered for one month with the Lao Rehabilitation Foundation, Inc., followed by visits to the various wineries in Thailand and India.

Ambrosia- the Mumbai-based wine and spirits monthly magazine is one of the media sponsors for this tour. Says Rojita Padhy, Associate Editor, ‘the purpose of supporting the cause was to help unite the Indian wine industry and facilitate the participation for a noble initiative and also providing adequate media coverage for the entire tour. We also believe that this would provide a great opportunity for the Indian wines to be auctioned in a global platform along with the best wines from across the globe.’

At a dinner organised by Ambrosia at the J W Marriott Hotel to welcome the duo and have them meet people from wineries and many wine lovers, members of the Terroir One, Mumbai Chapter of the Delhi Wine Club also joined in to meet the couple on the one-year long world wine route, treading on a less travelled path, not only to widen their horizon of world wine knowledge but also to help charity.

Said Bindu Malhotra, President of the Club, ‘we marvel at the efforts of these two young persons and as we like to organise out-of-the-box wine events, our members jumped at the idea of supporting these two and showing solidarity. I hope their experience with Indian wineries would be memorable; we have had a wine brunch with Miazma wines recently and the members still talk about the premium wines they enjoyed.’

A great idea for a good cause indeed and as a Chinese proverb goes ‘’If you want happiness for a lifetime - help the next generation.”

Visit to follow their progress and read more about them.


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