THE MAN BEHIND
Gagan SHARMA is amongst the key wine and beverage professionals in India. Having studied in Delhi, Rajasthan, Australia, United Kingdom, Hong Kong, and Austria, and travelled to over 20 different countries. He carries a level-headed approach to his work and writings, blending local and international schemes of things. He writes extensively in the Indian media about his tipples and experiences, and his words deliver the passion that he posses for the trade, the produce, the people behind them, and the journeys they’ve made. His experience is unparalleled, and his humility accentuates that further.
CREATOR, CURATOR, Sommelier, writer, judge, educator
Gagan has had a pleathora of experiences through his journey to become amongst the country’s finest beverage professional and has many ‘firsts’ to his name. This journey in wines and spirits began during his graduation in Hospitality Management from IHM Jodhpur, Rajasthan. For the love of cocktails, he also pursued a program in mixology. The quest for a deeper understanding took him to Melbourne, Australia for Masters in Business in Hospitality at Victoria University. It not only provided him a global view of the trade, but also exposed him to rituals yet to be infused on the home turf. Australia also opened the F&B world to him and laid foundation for what was to come. His tasting glass reached nearly all the major winemaking regions in the country, and finally decided to rest back in India, staining the glasses, palates, and minds of his countrymen.
Gagan continued his beverage education and become among the first Court of Master Sommeliers (CMS) Certified Sommeliers in India and then the country’s youngest Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET) Diploma graduate (at the time) from London, UK. It was only natural that he now shared this knowledge + skills with fellow countrymen through teaching Indian + international qualifications, spanning been for over a decade now.
He’s been the delegate to Barolo & Barbaresco DOCG, Conegliano Valdobbiadene (Prosecco) DOCG, and Sicilian DOCG Anteprima for several years, have represented India on many international panels in Austria, Hungary, Spain, Italy, Australia, Hong Kong, and more…
He recently became the first Indian to be awarded with the French Wine Scholar (FWS) certification, which he now has brought to India.
Through his experience, knowledge, and deep understanding about the industry, he’s helped build and restructure many restaurants, hotels, and F&B operations, and trained professionals across the globe. Gagan’s hosted experiences for luxury brands, MNCs, Embassies and High Commissions, confederations, and industry patrons. He’s been a curator at the Indian Sommelier Championship which became a nation-wide phenomenon under his tutelage, and now brings the same experience to future industry professionals through the Young Sommeliers’ Olympiad .
MOUNTAINS, TRAVEL, MUGHALS, URDU, BIKES, PARAGLIDING
His travels have taken him on many exciting journeys. He’s named in the Limca Book of Records for being the first and the only Indian to have visited all the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the country within a calendar year.
His journeys have opened him to understanding culture, history, architecture, mythology, local folklores, nature, and religion closely, realising the West’s fixation with our country. He wishes to be a professional mountaineer, paragliding pilot, and a proficient Urdu orator, and is a student of all these disciplines.
His stories for his love for poetry, monuments, the Mughals, and travels can turn you in to a passionate follower too. To disconnect he takes periodic hermitage in the mountains or embark on long bike trips.