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Lancashire curry house bomb hoaxer jailed

A hoaxer who called police to say that she was about to blow up a Lancashire curry house has been jailed for six months. Burnley Crown Court heard that Victoria Hosker, 26, phoned police claiming she had a bomb and would set it off at a Rishton restaurant.

Police say they are “delighted” that the judge imposed a prison sentence as her actions placed a huge demand on police resources which were already stretched. Sgt Simon Lynch from Lancashire police says, “Making hoax

calls is extremely irresponsible and members of the public can be con- fident that the police will thoroughly investigate any such calls and make every effort to track down anyone responsible.”

Indian wine steps up UK marketing

Indian wineries are stepping up their marketing in the UK. For the first time in the 30-year history of the London International Wine Fair (LIWF) eight of India’s best wine makers participated in a special Wines of India pavilion.

Over the last 10 years, wine making in India had become a serious business and the number of licensed wineries in India has shot up from two in 1999 to 69 in 2010, with more in the pipeline.

Cecilia Oldne, head of international business for Sula Vineyards, said despite being a young wine-making country, the scope for Indian wines in the UK was enormous. She believes India can learn and emulate the South African road to success in selling wine in the UK and Mumbia-based Sula has its own ambitious plans having exported 1,200 cases to the UK in a three month period recently. Clients in the UK include Benares in Berkeley Square. The market in India, however, will continue to be Sula’s stronghold for a long time to come as only 7 per cent of its production is exported.

With its vineyards near Pune, another brand, Indage, has been selling wines in the UK for the last 22 years. Indage’s Vikrant Chougule points out that of the 400 restaurants in the UK where its wines are dispensed, only 30-40 per cent are Indian restaurants. Chougle said the biggest challenge Indian win- eries had to fight was the temptation of selling Indian wine with Indian food and argued that Indian wine makers had to address the larger food market out- side the circle of Indian restaurants.

Spice Business Magazine 10 August | September 2010

Abhay Kewadkar, chief winemaker and business head of UB Group’s wine- making division, agrees. His view is that the route to success for Indian wines in the UK is to see beyond Indian restaurants. “We want to present a truly international wine- fine wine with any fine cuisine,” he says.

However, Mercury Winery’s Veral Pancholia expresses the view that Indian wines must zealously hold on to their “Indianness”. He said that was precisely the reason why he sold his

wines under the Aryaa brand name in slender bottles with henna designs on them.

Renowned wine writer Oz Clarke, after tasting what India had to offer, said he was impressed. But he also cautions that Indian wineries must keep the sweetness and oak finish a notch lower if they hope to succeed in a discerning market like the UK .

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