First Look At Vinoteca By Sula

April 6, 2012 1:54 pm by

If you believe that every good meal must include a bottle of wine, then this month brings happy news for you. Rajeev Samant, the founder and CEO of Sula Vineyards, will open a wine bar called Vinoteca by Sula, in Worli on Wednesday, April 11. Spain’s quaint neighbourhood wine bars that serve wine cocktails, tapas and pinchos served as the inspiration for Vinoteca, which is located on the same stretch of road as Chateau Indage’s Café Ivy Bar & Bistro. The warmly lit 1,600 square feet, 50-seater capacity Vinoteca has burgundy walls and wood flooring, and is divided into al fresco and indoor sections. The focal point in the latter is a bar mounted with a quirky light installation made using wine bottles and candle bulbs.

The kitchen is helmed by Spanish chef Silvia Grimaldo, who was friends with Samant before she came on board as a business associate. Samant and Grimaldo decided to make tapas (small plates) and pinchos (skewered appetisers) the focus of Vinoteca’s menu as “the serving of tapas is designed to encourage conversation”, said Samant. Some of the menu highlights, according to Grimaldo, are the batter fried calamari served with a garlic sauce; grilled kingfish in a sauce with ripened tomatoes and garlic; quinoa salad with walnuts, feta, and figs; patatas bravas (spicy fried potatoes); and a vegetarian tapas of grilled eggplant and baked capsicum and tomatoes lavished with olive oil. The desserts, all of which are made with either champagne or wine, include dark and white chocolate truffles with wine-laced chocolate cream centres. Grimaldo has also collaborated with gelato brand Amore to create a selection of wine-infused sorbets and gelatos such as a lemon sorbet spiked with Sula’s sauvignon blanc.

For the benefit of wine novices, the menu comes with nifty wine pairing tips for each dish, while the alcohol menu has handy tasting notes listed against each wine. You can order wine by the glass and by the bottle, and in addition to Sula’s entire range, your choices will include labels from Spain, France and Italy, such as Dom Perignon, Veuve Cicquot, Hardys and Piper-Heidsieck. The signature drinks include the sangria, made from Grimaldo’s family recipe that combines sparkling wine with seasonal fruits, and a dry martini-infused hot chocolate that is spiced with chilli.

Vinoteca is slated to open on Wednesday, April 11. Prices start at Rs200 for a glass of Sula’s sauvignon blanc and chenin blanc.