Winning With Wine - Kishan Pedhapally - Asav Wineyards

Who wouldn’t know Kishan Pedhapally and his wine brand in Hyderabad? You may have encountered him at lavish parties, seen him rubbing shoulders with the biggies from the F&B industry, or heard him chatting enthusiastically about the production and workings of wine. His passion for wines matches his knowledge about them. After gaining considerable experience in the market, he set out to launch his own wine brand: ASAV. He ensures that high standards are maintained at all stages of the business, from grape harvesting to vinification, storage, and transport, and sales. And of course, he gears all his efforts towards offering the absolute best to his consumers.
How did the idea of your business first come about?
I’ve been in the wine industry for the past 18 years and have worked with several companies, including Chateau Indage and Sula. While most wines were produced on a commercial scale by big companies in India, I realised that quality wines were missing in the market. Thus, the idea of coming up with a good quality wine for a reasonable price germinated.   
How do you stay relevant with the latest trends in the business?
In these fast-changing times, if you’re not abreast with the latest trend, you’re at risk of becoming outmoded. I network with friends and colleagues in the wine and beverage industry and read international journals and magazines on wines to keep myself updated. I also attend wine tastings as well as wine exhibitions across the country. That’s why all our grapes are grown organically; we keep pesticides and fertilisers away. Since this is the latest trend in the international platform, most top wine houses are now growing organic grapes.
What is the most rewarding part of what you do?
It’s the appreciation I receive from my customers. My wines have been appreciated for their quality, both by Indians as well as foreign clientele. I’m humbled and satisfied to know that all the hard work and effort I have invested in my work is worth every bit. ASAV has garnered many awards and won many hearts in Hyderabad. At the end of the day, when ASAV helps its consumers relax and celebrate life, it’s my biggest reward.  

What are some of the challenges you have overcome as part of your work?
At ASAV, we strive to maintain the highest quality possible. This is a challenge that we have successfully met and continue to do so. We ensure that only the best quality grapes are used in production, and we reject many batches of grapes that do not meet our standards.

Initially we faced a challenge in getting new customers to try our wine. But once they tasted it, they were surprised at how Indian wines could reach top-quality standards. Another challenge we have successfully overcome is getting shopkeepers to properly store the wine so that the quality is maintained. We educated them about wines, and how they should be stored away from direct sunlight, preferably in a cool and dark place. We love facing challenges head on; they keep us on our toes and help us grow!

What are your other hobbies and passions?
I exercise every day and spend all day on my mobile or laptop to update on Facebook and Twitter, the things related to wines. I am very passionate about wine and treat it like my second wife! Apart from that, being true to myself and learning something new every day is important to me.     ---- as told to Sumana