Weekend Vineyard Getaway
I had the most amazing weekend. I was one of the lucky few bloggers to be invited to the Fratelli estate in Akluj.
We set out from Bandra at 7am, and after a seven hour journey and a few hiccups (we blamed it on the curse of Friday the 13th) we settled into the spacious and extremely comfortable rooms at the Fratelli guest house. With bay windows opening onto a sprawling lawn and a view of the vineyard, I barely wanted to leave the room. But what we were treated to after was more that any of us could have asked for.
Here’s a photo journey of the trip:
The guest house
Equipped with four spacious bedrooms and a lounge area completely pimped out with a pool table, flat screen TV and home theatre. The staff is extremely warm and they all went out of their way to make our stay comfortable. They share a very obvious friendship and mutual respect amongst themselves which creates a very homely environment. The food tastes so good, very ghar ka khana (home food) like. We overate at every meal!
Tour of the winery and cellar
We missed Fratelli’s Tuscan Viticulturist and Oenologist Piero Masi on our trip to the vineyard, but Sandeep, the Assistant Winemaker took us through the entire winemaking process in their state of the art winery. The post-modern winery designed of glass and metal is modelled after a European Ferrari showroom. The cellar houses the Sette, which is the Fratelli Reserve oaked for a year, and currently only available for purchase at the vineyard.
Sipping eleven Fratelli wines directly under millions of stars in the sky in the early January chill. What more could you ask for?! If it is crackers, cheese and olives, we had that too.
I’m partial to the whites and loved the Chardonnay 2011. I also enjoyed the Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Sangiovese. More tasting notes here.
A night at the vineyard
The ATVs are the perfect way to get around the vineyard around the winery, and such good fun!
Vineyard tour, grape tasting, Syrah hill
A 20 minute ride away from the estate is Fratelli’s 150 acre vineyard where they’ve created three reservoirs to irrigate the entire property. We tasted different grape varieties as we drove up to the quaint hut on Syrah hill. A beautiful 360 degree view, cool breeze and chilled wine – the perfect spot to spend a couple of hours in the afternoon, enjoying the beauty around.
Our last night at the vineyard ended with a cultural performance (lejhim) by a troupe from the village as we huddled around the bonfire. A great end to a great weekend. I’m looking forward to going back there during harvest next month.
See more pictures here