Dec 21: Since Indian Wine Academy and delWine pioneered the concept of Top Ten Indian Women of Wine in 2013 in order to biennially recognise and motivate women working in the Indian wine industry, Karishma Grover, winemaker at Grover Vineyards has been doubling up also as a Brand Ambassador and has been an obvious choice in this category for the 3rd time in a row
During a casual conversation about 7 years ago with Dr. Hildegarde Heymann, a fellow judge at the annual wine competition Mundusvini in Neustadt, Germany where both of us have been judging for several years, I learnt that she was a Professor in sensory evaluation at the University of California, Davis. I also knew that Karishma Grover, eldest daughter of Kapil Grover, then the majority shareholder of Grover Vineyards, had studied there before joining the winery as an assistant winemaker in 2008. When I had I asked her if she remembered Karishma. ‘Oh, yes,’ was her instant reply, ‘she was a very good student.’
A graduate in Viticulture & Enology (V&E) with a Minor in Managerial Economics, Karishma had completed the prestigious wine making degree from the acclaimed University of California, Davis. Her coursework included viticulture, winery operations and sensory evaluation. Upon completion of her degree, Karishma interned with Cakebread Cellars in Napa Valley, California. She has worked closely with renowned French consulting enologist Michel Rolland, consultant to GroverZ. She has also interned in France and actively participates in all the tastings and experiments that are conducted during his visits to India.
She had been on our radar since then and we have watched her carve out a place for herself in the winery and wine industry in general over the years. Moreover, as she was directly involved in the processing of wine, she had been our natural choice as one of the Top Ten Women of Wine in India List when we started the project in 2013.
‘She is the one who first championed the Viognier for our company. She felt it would do well in India, given its fruit expressiveness and also introduced art collections with designer labels for Grover Wine,’ says Kapil proudly. Today, Viognier has become an important wine grape in their portfolio, including the Vijay Amritraj Collection (both white and red variants).
She has been more and more involved in the winemaking, shuttling between Mumbai, Nashik and Bangalore. She enjoys the challenge and is actively involved in their marketing and public relation departments. Her priorities are to maintain a high level of quality and keep on educating Indians in wine culture. Be it the winery visit and guided tasting or a wine festival, or the recent celebration of the 25th Anniversary of Grover Vineyards at the Leela Gurgaon, one could see Karishma right in front talking about her wines at tasting with various groups.
She was reportedly the brain behind the super premium Magnum of Insignia that was introduced last year in Bangalore and was sold at Rs. 5200 that made it the most expensive wine in India. 300 magnums were made only and most were sold out reportedly.
Karishma has been instrumental in Grover Zampa winning numerous international accolades. Including several at last year’s Decanter, DAWA and Hong Kong International Wine Competition, making Grover Zampa the biggest Award winning wine producer in India.
With 10 years of relevant, direct wine making experience, assistance in marketing and PR and a guaranteed continued presence in the wine industry, she is our natural choice in the winemaker category, for the third edition as well and we are happy to welcome Karishma Grover again as one of the Top Ten Indian WOW 2017.
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