Tête-à-Tête with Winemaker Ajoy Show by All About Daru’s Nupur Joshi

We would like to know your first memory associated with Wine?

His first sip of wine was of Golconda Wines.

When he was doing his graduation in Micro biology from Garware College, Pune he was asked by his Professor Diwane to make wine out of Oranges . The wine turned out to be really good. He then started experimenting with wine from bananas & other fruits. Banana wine is extremely easy to make as it clarifies faster compared to other fruits.

Your favorite wines –One Indian & one Imported?


Sula Dindori Reserve Viognier is his favorite Indian Wine.

His favorite International wines are from Cote Rotie especially the reds.

Your all time favorite grape variety & wine region.

Riesling because you can have a dry or an off dry style. Also because it is cool, foggy & great for small boutique wineries. It is great with Cabernet, Zinfandel & Chardonnay varietals.

Region is Sonoma valley in California

Wine drinking trends abroad & in India… How would you like to change or create awareness about Wines in India?

The main trend that he saw there & would like to see here in India is… Drinking a glass of wine everyday cause it`s good for you & enjoying a glass with your meal…

Tell us a bit about your journey from the day you joined the Sula family & till now?

When he joined Sula all he knew was the theory of Wine!! Post all the experimentation & then his harvesting stint in California & Bordeaux, after 16 harvests in Sula, 2 Harvests in California & 1 harvest in Bordeaux, he still feels that he has been learning from the beginning & still evolving , he is learning something new with every harvest & the learning curve for him at Sula has been an amazing one..

How have the wine trends evolved from the point of time when Sula was launched, till now when you have so many wineries that Maharashtra has to offer & all having various unique styles of winemaking?

Right from the beginning, Sula has always had a unique style of winemaking. Earlier the wines were only known as Red wine or white wine but Sula started with the concept of Cabernet Shiraz & Sauvignon Blanc!! So Sula introduced people to the grape varieties!! Hence people could compare the grape varieties with the wines made in India & abroad.

Sula started with tasting room tours which no one else was allowing, this gave wine lovers more fascination towards the wine making style & got them more connected with the products!!

Your wine making mentor is?

Kerry Demski, Richard Dubois & Zavier.

How do you see the impact of alcohol awareness website such as All About Daru on social stigmas & misconceptions related to alcohol in India?

He feels websites like this are much needed & awareness they create is good. The main message that he wants to give out is that drinking alcohol is not just about getting high but also enjoying the flavors & also understanding the unique style of making the wines !!

Rapid Fire:-

Your All Time favorite Wine Bar in India & Abroad? He prefers to buy a wine & sit at home & enjoy it rather than go out!!

One place you have been yearning to visit to try the wines of? South Africa

To come to an end to this interview – Any pointers for the young & upcoming Winemakers? Best Knowledge is the one that is learned on the winery, so that`s a basic tip for all upcoming winemakers. It is easy to make wine but the art is in making good wine.

Ajoy Shaw

Chief Winemaker & Vice President | Sula

Overall in charge of winemaking operations for Sula, he is involved in winemaking & supervising team of winemakers, taking crucial decisions on tasting, blending and harvesting with routine visits to vineyards, coordinating with head of Viticulture to align viticulture with winemaking needs and launching of new brands

He has experience of 16 harvests- 13 harvests in India, 2 harvests in California, 1 in Bordeaux. He represented India as an International Judge in 2007 and 2008 for the prestigious ‘Les Citadelles du Vin’ wine competition and the 2009 Shanghai International Wine Challenge. Has delivered several talks on winemaking in colleges and Indian expositions. He annually visits the Californian vineyards during harvest and discuses maturity issues with consultant Winemaker.



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