Ashank SJB Rana also knew little about the vast variety of wines before deciding to study it. It was because of the potential he saw for wine promotion in Nepal that he graduated in wine management from Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He is now director of marketing at Vesper House, a wine cellar and restaurant in Jhamsikhel. Rana has seen a gradual shift in Vesper’s clientele, with more Nepali buyers nowadays than expats.
“It is natural for customers to be baffled, as wines are still a slow bloomer in the country. But consumers are catching up because they travel abroad and have exposure,” says Rana.
Vesper House currently imports hundreds of wines, including from Australia, Spain, Germany, Italy, and France. The Nepali company also has its own wine label appealing to a wide variety of pallets, from Chardonnay to Syrah to Cabernet Sauvignon. Nepali customers typically prefer Merlot and Chardonnay.
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Vesper works with restaurants to advise them on their wine menus, and trains their waiters.
We asked Rana to list his ten most popular wine brands.