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Posted: Friday, 05 February 2021 23:12


IWINETC: Visiting Exotic Wine Regions over a Glass of Wine or Dinner

Feb 05: Barcelona-based IWINETC- International Wine Tourism Conference which has been organising annually tourism-based Conferences since 2011, has organised Grape Escape Destinations 2021 –a 10-hour Presentation of 1-hour capsules by local experts to visit Armenia, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Champagne, Greece, Italy (Sicily and Umbria) and Portugal, writes Subhash Arora who believes the programme has immense value for wine lovers, especially as it is FREE and the timings are perfect for Indians

Wine Tourism is not only the key to the growth of a winery, it could also be a means of survival for many middle-of-the course wineries, according to Sarah Jane Evens MW, and Rajeev Samant, Founder CEO of Sula Vineyards, who gave his own example as a case study of successful wine tourism in India at BRWSC Conference in Beijing, China in 2016, organised by Vinopres, Spain. Sarah based her conclusion on discussions with several Masters of Wine doing work in wine tourism and inputs from countries like Spain and South Africa.

WineFuture 2021 Virtual Wine Conference will be discussing Future of Wine Industry on 23-26 February, 2021 giving enough importance to Wine Tourism by having special segments. It has already organised a successful Webinar last month, moderated by Michele Shah of Tuscany-reported by delWine.

The UN-type Paris based organisation OIV of which there are 49 government members including India, not only accepted the Great Wine Capitals Global Network (GWC) as an observer, last year but recognising the importance of wine tourism, it even organised a global Webinar along with the UNWTO on 22 September, 2020 with an all-women panel from South Africa, Argentina, Chile, France, Italy and Spain sharing their country experiences on dealing with Covid-19 and highlighting the importance of local markets, new partnerships, more open-air experiences and digital transformation.

Also Read: OIV: Innovating in wine tourism in the context of COVID-19

Barcelona-based IWINETC- International Wine Tourism Conference has been in the forefront of international wine tourism focusing on visits to different wine regions and holding wine conferences since 2011-the most memorable being Georgia, Barcelona, Champagne, Hungary and Italy in recent years. These Conferences attended by wine specialists, wine tourism operators and accredited journalists, is well attended from stakeholders across the world.

With wine tourism getting more interesting and people ready to make trips overseas when foreign travels open up, IWINETC has organised Grape Escape Destinations for 2021 for those who love wine tourism. It features a Live programme with 10 sessions looking at grape escape destinations around the world. They are  designed to help wine and culinary tourism professionals look towards a brighter future as the industry rebuilds and recovers post pandemic.

An exclusive online Presentation to 9 destinations- Armenia, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Champagne, Greece, Italy (Sicily and Umbria) and Portugal. With more and more women travelling in small groups, there is a special segment where a couple of women presenters will focus on wine tourism by women groups.

Each Presentation is an hour duration-on February 11, 18, 25 and March 4 and 18. The timings are at 8.30 pm and 9.30 pm IST (India is ahead of Spain by 4.5 hours) – perfect for Indian wine lovers when they can enjoy the Presentation over a glass or two of wine and possibly over dinner. The content will also be available on demand after each session.

Commenting on this initiative, Anthony Swift, Event Director, says, “Last year has been a huge challenge for the wine and culinary tourism industry; things look to be the same at least till summer of 2021. So it’s fantastic to come together with IWINETC Grape Escape Destinations for 2021, to share our destinations, make valuable connections, hear from industry experts. We’re delighted with the destinations and speakers lined up.”

Also Read: OIV: GWC joins International Organisation of Vine and Wine as Observer

Founded in Spain in 2009, IWINETC has organised events in 45 different countries throughout the world with Conferences organised in Porto (2011)-followed by Perugia, Zagreb, Tbilisi, Champagne, Barcelona, Sicily, Budapest and Basque Country. These Conferences offer unique ways to discover grape escape destinations around the world, especially if you are involved in wine, gastronomy and tourism.

Here is a list of events with Synopsis:


11 February @20.30 IST: Exploring Armenia

5 wine regions, over 6100-years-old wine heritage along with testimonies of Armenian wine-centred culture all over the world, are waiting for you to embrace them and explore Armenia through a glass of wine. Dr. Zara Muradyan and Hayarpi Shahinyan of the Wine and Vine Foundation of Armenia will take us across the Armenian wine regions to guide us on things-to-do-and-see list.


11 February @21.30 IST: Bulgaria Wine Tour

Join Zina Sorensen & Vasil Zlatev of Plovdiv as they delve into Bulgaria’s wine regions highlighting the nature, wineries, history, gastronomy and most spectacular UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Bulgaria offers peace and relaxation as well as memorable moments that you will cherish. They will also explain why Bulgaria is a wonderful destination for your next wine-filled holiday.


18 February @20.30 IST: Croatia: Wine & Culinary Heritage

With thousands of years of history, more than 160 indigenous grape varieties and where East meets Mediterranean and Central Europe, this presentation will give short overview of amazing potential Croatia has for wine and food lovers. Neno Basic Kostadinovic will take us through a wine and Culinary Heritage of this beautiful country with a long coastline and islands.


18 February @21.30 IST: Solo Female Travellers

Nowadays, the financial independence and purchasing power of women are growing. The higher communal acceptance and more autonomy allow women to participate more in various tourist and leisure activities. This presentation will demonstrate what wine tourism industry players can do to attract this segment of customers. Valeria Tenison (Sommelier, wine blogger and a wine journalist).


Also Read: BRWSC 2016: Wine Tourism is the Key

25 February @20.30 IST: Journey to Sicily

Sicily has been a land of domination and cultural stratifications over the centuries. This has enriched it with new grapevines. It produces now diverse wines across its territory. Over the last few decades, continuous investments by large wine producers have contributed to developing growth of Wine Tourism. Daniela Marino (Isolani per Caso) & Valeria Carastro (Etna Wine Lab) will show you highlights of this beautiful wine region.


25 February @21.30 IST: Canada- Emerging Cool Climate Destinations

Discover Canada’s most emerging wine destinations and their approach to wine tourism, from the Okanagan Valley to Niagara on the Lake in Ontario and The Quebec Eastern Townships. As Cool Climate wine regions gain in popularity, having a down to earth approach and experience can be appealing to many new consumers. Kristine Mansuy will discuss how Cool Climate wine regions can attract different types of consumers and differentiate itself from the more classic wine destinations, making Canada one of the top wine destinations in the world.


4 March @20.30 IST:  Portugal- The Next Wine Destination

The reputation of Portuguese wines has been increasing in recent years worldwide. Wine tourism has followed this trend, becoming one of the most demanded activities in Portugal-‘the flavour of the year’. This is a small country where wine is perfectly integrated into rich cuisine, mountains and beaches and friendly and welcoming people. Madalena Vidigal of Entre Vinhas will show you this Iberian wine country!


4 March @21.30 IST Greece- Delightful Holiday

Greek wine has been making headlines for some time now: by winning awards in prestigious competitions, by showcasing their unique terroir, the varieties, even by connecting the wines with the Greek mythology! What many wine drinkers don't know is that Greece's winemaking history began 3,500 years ago. We will take a quick tour of the Greek wine regions and the indigenous varieties.


18 March @20.30 IST: Wine Tourism in Italy (Umbria)

Movimento Turismo del Vino Umbria presents the unforgettable wine experiences offered by its associated wineries in the "green heart" of Italy. Throughout the region wine culture is woven together with nature, art, villages and history, making Umbria a real experience to live- a place where what is beautiful also tastes good. MTV Umbria is the best storyteller and it guarantees top wine hospitality standards.


Also Read: IWINETC 2016: Indian Wine Tourism Young but Exciting

18 March @21.30 IST: Champagne- Ooh La La

Elisabet Vidal of Marne Tourist Board will take us through the beautiful Champagne region and its exquisite vineyards and cellars and you will learn there is more to Champagne than just the Royal drink. Details including Free Registration will be shared soon.

Registrations for all these events is FREE. For more information and registration, visit: www.iwinetc.com.  You may also contact Anthony Swift at  info@winepleasures.com

Subhash Arora

GALLERY of Destinations



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