Monday, 30th October 2017

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Say cheers with first organic kiwi wine

ARUNACHAL SPIRIT

By ROOPAK GOSWAMI in Guwahati
  • Published 18.10.17
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DROP IN: The boutique winery in Arunachal Pradesh. Picture by Tage Rita

Guwahati: A boutique winery from Arunachal Pradesh is bringing out a wine brimming with goodness and health. The country's first organic kiwi wine, being launched on October 26, retains all the fruit's vitamins and minerals.

The wine - Naara Aaba - is produced at Lambu-Subu Food and Beverages Limited at Hong village, Ziro in Lower Subansiri district. The village is 5,343 feet above sea level.

Tage Tatung, joint director of the state horticulture department, said this is the first kiwi wine to be launched in the country on a commercial scale. "Kiwi growers will be benefited as a huge quantity of kiwis will be procured for wine making. The government will earn revenue and the unit will generate employment," he said. There was a kiwi wine produced in 2014 but that was blended with grapes.

"The fruit is abundantly available in our place. Kiwi farmers are unable to explore its full potential as a raw fruit in terms of market and price. Making wine was the best option to preserve its nutritive values. Drinking wine is a tradition in tribal culture but preserving the drink for a long duration was not possible because of lack of modern methods of brewing wine. Our kiwi wine is a solution to this gap between tradition and technology. I have done a lab analysis test of the nutritive values retained in the wine. The kiwis are grown organically in the garden," Tage Rita, chairman and managing director of Lambu-Subu Food and Beverages Limited, said.

The idea of the project belongs to her husband Takhe Tamo. "It is a ready supplement to refresh one's body and mind just like tea or coffee," she said. Apart from 13 per cent alcohol, it has vitamin C, vitamins B1 and B2 and minerals like calcium, iron, sodium chloride, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.

The winery has a plant capacity of 40,000 litres per batch. The process takes about four months from crushing the raw material to bottling. The wine tastes best between six to eight degrees Celsius.

On the brand name Naara Aaba, she said her late father-in-law was lovingly called by this name and was an avid local wine lover. Kiwi production in Arunachal is around 9,428 metric tonnes, of which Lower Subansiri district produces 2,500 metric tonnes. Nasik-based wine maker Achyut Sukhdev Niphade, who helped in making the wine, said it is light pale golden in colour and has a sweet aroma with ripped fruit flavours. It is slightly sweet on the palate and has a fruity flavour. The wine will be launched at a tasting party at Hong with a visit to the winery and kiwi orchard.