The National Day of Spain also known as Hispanic Day or Fiesta Nacional de España or Día de la Hispanidad is held annually on 12th October. Not many know that this date is chosen because in the year 1492, on this very day Christopher Columbus set his food on American land in an expedition sponsored by King Ferdinand of Spain.
The Ambassador of Spain in India Mr. José Ramón Barañano hosted the grand evening on 12th October, 2017 to mark the National Day of Spain with special guests from various embassies and other important guests living in Delhi.
The Spanish Extravaganza kickstarted with a champagne hour, followed by a speech by the Spanish Ambassador and further followed by a few musical performances. Winner of Masterchef India Shipra Khanna was there to grace the event who also happens to be the Culinary Ambassador of Spain.
The lavish spread of snacks and food was organized by The Park Hotel, New Delhi. Among the Spanish delicacies I could only see a vegetarian and a seafood version of Paella. Apart from that there were various food stations such as Dimsum Station, Pizza Station, Pasta Station, Grilled Meats Station and Dessert Station. An exclusive range of Spanish wines were also showcased. Mahou India being the beer partner for the event, showcased its premium quality beers (in its price bracket), that they have launched in the Indian market.
Being a 100% subsidiary of leading Spanish brewing major, Mahou San Miguel, Mahou India aims to capture a huge share in the Indian market. Since this premium quality beer is being produced in Rajasthan, it is competing with lower quality beers at a similar price point, thereby hoping to reach its goal earlier than expected.
In fact India is the first country for Mahou San Miguel where it has a fully owned subsidiary outside of Spain and out of its eight breweries, seven are housed in Spain and one in India. When I asked their CEO Mr. Fernando Bustamante whether they have changed the taste of their beer to suit the Indian palette, he said a big YES explaining that since Indians don’t prefer to have bitter tasting beers so they had to smoothen out the taste.
Though Mahou India´s portfolio includes three varieties of beer – Mahou 5 Star, Mahou Clásica and Dare Devil I only tasted 5 star and Clásica and found both really crisp and refreshing, definitely better than other similarly priced beers in the market. I also got to know that in the year 2016 Mahou Clásica won the Ambrosia – IndSpirit Award for Product of the Year in the mild beer category.
Fernando Bustamante, CEO, Mahou India said, “It gives me a great sense of pride to be a part of these celebrations and to witness the ‘Cañas & Tapas’ (snacks and beer) of Spain delighting the esteemed guests. In Spain, beer is served in small glasses called as Cañas which is enjoyed along with tapas i.e. snacks. It is our endeavour to bring the Spanish culture to India where beer isn’t just about consuming, but savouring it and we are sure to make it bigger in the times to come.”