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?India's Soul Tree Wines targets UK retail

Published:  12 February, 2014

Indian wine company Soul Tree Wines, operating out of Birmingham, expects its products to be on UK supermarket shelves within months.

Soul Tree was founded in 2009 by two Indian entrepreneurs keen to build a global market for wines produced in India's key wine region, the Nashik Valley. To date, Soul Train wines have been available in the UK on an on-trade only basis.

"With more and more consumers experiencing the wine there is an increasing demand for retail availability, and we are looking to work on making a retail range of these wines available to consumers through 2014," co-founder Alok Mathur told Harpers.

The wines, although made using the most popular varietals, also borrow from 'India's unique mix of latitude, altitude, soils, and climate to be an expression of the local terroir, rather than an imitation of wines and styles from more established regions', he explained.

Soul Tree's wines range from a White Zinfandel to a Shiraz, and while Mathur admits they pair naturally with their local cuisine, they also work well with other cuisines that are similarly complex or use similar spices, such as Thai, Mexican or Chinese.

"We find that some of our wines, specifically the Sauvignon Blanc, the Rosé, and even the Shiraz, are also becoming increasingly popular on their own at bars, pubs and at home", Mathur added.

Soul Tree is using the popularity of Indian food as a springboard into the UK market. Approximately a million Indian takeaway meals are sold each week, Mathur told Harpers, and yet the majority of people remain unaware of the quality and range of Indian wine.

"From a trade perspective, the combination of significant potential and the nascent current state make the opportunity obvious," he said.

"We have only just scratched the surface, but with more and more of the trade now backing Soul Tree and Indian wines, awareness, availability and credibility are only going to increase".