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Amrut Whisky:A Blind Date With Whiskies


            Gulping down whisky is what we always do isn't it?Because most of us drink to get drunk :)

But today we learn the art of enjoying whiskies

But suppose today you are told that whiskey does have a taste and flavor that you might cherish neat without a drop of coke or water,many of you will think I am mad.Today I am beginning to evolve this definition of my madness as It used to be to sophistication where I drink whiskey to enjoy and so can you.

                                           Flavors we had never tasted before!

Won't it burn is what you will ask me?Not until you gulp it down all at once.What happens is before whiskey we already usually have had some food,so our palette is not adapted to the taste of whiskey as and when it comes,so always  the first palette of whiskey is not ready yet.However after rolling around your tongue like a chewing gum,slow and easy,take a sip,sit back and relax and you will be talking to the flavors of whiskey.Quite literally.

As it is said in the world of whiskies,

One man's whiskey is not another man's whisky.

Presented by the Pillars of Whisky Industry 'Amrut Distillery' which has won numerous awards worldwide and also winning the third best whiskey in the world,Whiskey Tasting Event was organized at The Glass House,Bangalore.Now this place is all Glass.It's beautiful.Owned by Rohit who owns a couple of other restaurants such as City Bar,Zaffran,Kobe Sizzlers,

The Glasshouse- The Entry

Glass House has cuisine which is inspired European,so its no surprise if you suddenly develop liking for Mango Chicken or Goat Cheese Balls.

A Blind Date With Whiskies Begins

Today was the day of blind whisky tasting.On a bitter note,we hardly knew that these whiskies are a boutique brand from Bangalore and world famous.For the bitterness of whiskies most of us complain about,the bitterness comes from the oak and there are varieties some of which includes caramel,bananas and even anise!Not every whiskey is bitter.

Whisky:Bitter or Better?

Ashok from Amrut Whisky told us that Amrut started as Amrut lab which slowly evolved over time.The fact that there was this whiskey tasting by Glasgow where they had 800 whiskies from various countries,couldn't recognize the country from which the samples of Amrut were placed.90% of them answered it as Scottish from the Spey Side because of its fruitiness,1% said Irish but none said India.That gave them the drive further to build their identity.Today,the highest consumer of whiskey is from India.

Beginning with the tasting event,I like the fact that it was very fair and done with an open mind.The tumblers were being arranged in Chronological order without names and it was us,who were going to decide what smell do we get what flavors we get and does it last long on our palette or washes off also called the finish.We pretended to be judges in our own right where we were each scoring the blind whiskies.The ones we were tasting had 40-45% alcohol wooh!

The shape of tumbler is such as the flavors are then concentrated.

Nosing And Sipping:The Slow Process of Sophistication We Skip

Passing the body heat to raise the whisky temperature

The first step to tasting any whisky is the smell.First with the first nose and then with the second.As it is said,for everyone a particular nostril is better than the other.For example,A European guy,he is used to strawberry unlike us who get oranges in plenty,the smell to the European guy if citrus might relate to berries more.After you have smelt it once,hold the glass from the bottom with the palm and enclose the top with your other hand.This technique passes the body heat into the glass and the temperature of the whiskey is raised adding onto completely different flavors.

                                                Scores for 1 to 6 whisky on what we felt
                                         The names of the whiskies were identified later
Like for the whisky no 1 we got flavors of fruity woody citrus while nosing for the first time while
toffee,chocolate,cinnamon spicy while nosing for the second time.It had a bit of taste of plum and apples.The second whiskey has tinges of Anise,Vanilla,Licorice,Honeycomb while nosing and vanilla was more dominant on the palette for the second time which had tinges of spiciness and orange.This one had an aftertaste of saltiness or tamarind and was more complex than the previous one.

Whiskey is a choice.In Scandinavia,people don't want to drink any other whiskey unless Smokey.

Intoxicated already:Smokiness,Peatiness or Fruitiness

The third whisky had citrus,nutmeg while nosing and smokiness dancing due to peat on our palette.
A whisky on a palette is harsh when either the strength of alcohol is high or spirit is not mature enough. Amrut whiskies are made in oak barrel to make it mellow and this creates more character inside the cask over the period of maturation.

Unusual shots:Tattoos and Smiles.Whisky has to be fun!

Types of Whisky,Peat and Influence of Water

Nature has its own ways - and we make the rest happen.

Whiskies are divided into three types - single malt,blended and woven.The woven whiskies are the ones made in the state of Kentucky in America.Single malt whisky has 100% malted barley,water and yeast and its distilled and kept in oak barrel for min 3 years.Blended whiskies which are the most popular and cheaper have 100% malted barley and other cereals like corn,wheat etc.

Brighten up!

Now in the above mentioned third whiskey I mentioned peat.Peat moss is nothing but an old plant vegetation formed over millions of years and then discharges carbon with moisture.In old days,Scotland used to use peat as fossil fuel for burning.During the maturing process of barley there are two methods to remove moisture one by hot air and another by burning the peat.

The fourth one has nosing flavor as banana and was sweet and smooth.The fifth one had nosing flavors as caramel and banana and was smoky on the palette.While the last one was too peaty yet fruitfully well balanced.

This plate actually has 'Glasshouse' written from in to out.Go figure!

Goat’s cheese lollipops: spiced romesco, dates and jalapenos stuffing, chilly lavash triangle

Chicken fire cracker: red dynasty cabbage slaw, scallions 

Lamb and jalapeño sliders: pickled cabbage, mini bun

He also added that,the minerals used as the source of water is a marketing gimmick by many companies.So whether you add water from River Spey or River Glen or anywhere in the world,we heat the water to 65 degrees and yeast during the fermentation eats up all the minerals present in water and produces alcohol by accident.When the temperature reaches 32 degrees alcohol dies.Also to tone out the strength of alcohol from 70% to 40% we de -mineralize the water hence it doesn't matter where the water comes from in the process.

My favorites were 4-5 and one turned out to be Amrut Fusion.The real test was a win-win! We knew what we had,what we like and how to have it.

The whiskey for the first time,though neat didn't taste bitter,all we had to know was how to drink it in a proper way !

                                            Chocolate shoes at Glasshouse! Awesome.

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Cappadocia Voyager Balloons:Overview,Interview

M. Halis Aydogan gets candid with Ankionthemove about all things adventurous and the journey with Cappadocia Voyager Balloons so far!

Kudos to passion and the strength behind following it! Hats off Halis,we love you!
Click here to read my ballooning experience

How difficult was it to convince your parents to start something like this?

I started by 1996 as a tour guide. My father was in tourism business for long time so I grew up in the hotel and so I knew tourism. We have Turkish Aviation Association; they were doing sports flights in different parts of Turkey. I opened my own Travel Agency and we rented 3 balloons of them in 1998 and that was the period we started and it was very difficult to tell people, travel agencies were not much interested, however slowly and slowly, people who flew with us recommended Balloon ride over Cappadocia when they went back, and that by itself grew exponentially in the last 5 years. Like 5 years ago, there were only 10 companies, now there are 25 in the area

So you are also a pilot, how has your journey been?

I love ballooning by the way and it was a business nobody was doing except a civil aviation pilot named Lars Eric Möre With his company. And since I was very much interested to learn and since I had an advantage of being a tour guide, knowing English for communication, knowing all the areas in Turkey, I learnt from him, I had to get a license and so I did.

Initially when you flew, did you have a co-pilot with you?

What the rule says, the moment you are flying the big basket of like 20 people then you need to have a co-pilot with you .Initially yes .But now I am an instructor pilot as well, and have 11 pilots with me including me .I have trained all of them and they fly with me for min 6 months to get an idea and information. There are around 150 active pilots in Cappadocia and we train other company pilots as well.

While flying, does the sights differ every day?

                                                              Snowed out Cappadocia
                One of the reasons why Cappadocia is the best Ballooning site in the world is 
                                           Last year they flew for 328 days in a year
                                               Every year its more than 300+ days
                                 The winds are favorable,Winters or Summer,its a must do!
                                                  Pic By : Cappadocia Voyager Balloons

Every morning is a different flight.

That’s why we change our take off area and depending on the wind conditions; we take off from where we possibly can. Today, you were in main Cappadocia and we didn't go to love valley but yesterday we spent like half an hour in the love valley. We took off from where we did today was because the wind was very slow ,we stayed at comparatively low level space way for taking pictures first before shooting up. With the sunrise, the winds change always so we moved to Red Valley, Rose Valley, Cavusin Old Greek Village and we did the landing. Yesterday because of wind direction, we went to love valley.

In the last 3 years, except from 3 times only on Google map, we landed on different spots.

The thing that pilot can manage - the level of the balloon to be up and down , rest is by winds.

If that is so, how is the crowd in the air managed, keeping in mind that there are 100’s which fly every day?

Pilots interact with each other during the flight as there are 100's in the air.
Like them on Facebook as they update almost everyday with interesting captures

That’s why all balloons that we own have 2 radios. They have one to talk to the crew members and another to talk to the other pilots in the area. So we know each other and all the pilots are interacting like “we are above you, we are getting towards you!”

Apart from wind, are there are other conditions that are applicable?

If the wind speed is over 16km/hr we don’t fly. Rain is not a problem, but if it’s raining from the beginning / all day we don’t fly. But if it rains in the middle then no problem , the balloons get wet but the people remain dry under the envelope.

Sometimes when you go up, the weather might turn out to be really windy, in that situation what do you do? Do you land at other place?

It can happen sometimes ,that after 30-45 minutes of flight ,it turns out to be really windy .What we do in our company, before we do the landing, we explain the situation to people, because then the landing might be bumpy(90% of the times landings are gentle) but sometimes it can be windy. So at the beginning of every flight, we teach flight landing position for such situations. Most of the companies do not prefer to fly in strong winds, cancelling the flight, so that’s what we do if it’s from the beginning. Also windy means not slow motion, but it can be harder than normal so the landing area is little less.

Today, you landed on a trailer instead of on ground, why?

That is what I learnt from Swedish Pilot, Lars Eric Möre he was very good with Ballooning techniques .It also is easy then to pull the balloon(90 kg basket + burner and everything) and also the people are impressed. Direct landing on trailer is always easy so you don’t have to carry other stuff.

Personally what other places have you done Hot Air Ballooning?

I flew in Brisbone, Barcelona Spain, Russia.

Doesn't it get boring flying every day?

As I told you, three times only we landed on same spot and no its not boring, it’s exciting for me as it’s my passion.

Why the silver color on your Balloons?

In our company, we use silver colored balloons because its extra strong .In Cappadocia everyone is using fabric which is not nylon but stronger. In Europe they use Nylons which is not as strong.

Also, colors like Red, orange are good for decoration but they fade very fast and are not that strong. We at Cappadocia Voyager Balloons use silver color because it’s double layered and safety for us is the primary reason.

Also we pay attention to cross section of the balloon, even if there is a hole of 2cm above the middle section, it’s a reason enough to cancel the flight. Whereas even if there is a hole of say 3m below the middle section, no problem. For us, safety is important for ourselves and others.

The civil aviation of Turkey they do the checks every morning, checking 5-6 balloons in random, they even do alcohol tests on pilots. Before flying, we have to get up and check the weather conditions in the area.

What are the age, weight, and medical limitations?

Minimum age is 6.People with 2-3 year old kids generally request them if they can fly with them which I strongly not-recommend and explain to them that the reason is “First they would not understand anything from the flight, they would get bored within 5-10 minutes of the flight and would say I want to go back, I don’t want to be here” .I have seen children sleeping in balloons as well. Another thing about the 2-4 year olds is they get scared by the sound of the burner and then they don’t want to be in balloon at all .Also security wise ,It once happened that during a bumpy landing, the father left the child and was putting his camera in the bag ,I grabbed the child and was angry but it’s not recommended for 2-4 year olds.  Also pregnant ladies are not allowed. During one of these flights when we got to know it is supposed to be a bumpy landing while in the air, one of the ladies then said she was pregnant and since I wasn't aware of that before I was very shocked because we couldn't do a bumpy landing then. Then I told the crew members to get extra crew members,10 people hold the balloon and we did a very gentle landing .But as a rule, pregnant ladies are not allowed.

Every basket has a weight limit depending on Balloon size like today with people, with burner and with everything was 2460kgs.

I see awards lined up, what are they?

The awards are from European Balloon Festival in July this year, we were there and we were in the 4th position of the competition there .And we got as the best team,as we had more experience than them because we fly everyday here .In Europe they fly maximum 60 days and maximum they see is around 40 balloons in the air. When it was windy ,we were the only balloons who took off, and that’s why they gave an award.

Have there been any celebrities who flew with you?

There are many people who did, but usually when they come they are there casual self and hence you wouldn't know .Last year there was ‘Brian Atwood ’(the girls love him) and years back were 2 senators from US

Do you cater to customized packages as well for couples,honeymooners,groups etc?

We have balloon for honeymooners for 2 people, we have exclusive balloons .However these small balloons, has one partition and the pilot and everything hangs around them. So I would recommend the one with lots of space possibly the one called deluxe flight which is 1.5 hour and its max 8-10 people flight. The standard flights are bigger baskets in which we can have 20 people .We started 3 years ago comfort flights which are also bigger baskets for 12-16 people.

Do you in future consider sport such as Balloon Jumping?

In 2004,we had people who did balloon jumping in Cappadocia. They were professional divers. It would work but not possible at the moment due to heavy traffic .We can maximum go to 6000 feet as for ballooning now, but for balloon jumping they required 12000 feet of height.

Apart from Cappadocia,are there any other sites of Ballooning in Turkey?

Me @Pamukkale
True,though Pamukkale makes an interesting Paragliding Site
For Hot Air Ballooning Cappadocia is best
As its spread in larger area!

Ballooning happens in Pamukkale sometimes but it’s very rare.

Because when people fly, they want to see balloons in the air along with landscape and that’s when they enjoy most.

At Pamukkale Travertines are situated in small areas.

How many people fly every day and is it popular with Indians?

Happy winter time in the air.
33000 people flew last year with Cappadocia Voyager Balloons

172 people can fly every day, and last year 33000 people with us. There were no limitations last year, we were flying all 9 balloons day to day .This year, we have limitations of 100 balloons, and so every day we can fly ours 7 balloons. Last 5 years, Indians are coming to Turkey, and we have many Indians flying, just 3 days ago we had 3 Indian families flying with us. And thankfully, the Indian families are very understanding when we say that their 3 year old cannot fly, we have our babysitter and they understand.

How many members do you have in your office?

64 people working.

Has your wife been supportive of your endeavors?

My wife, she knows that I do ballooning. She had a flight only once with me. Waking up early is a bit difficult thing for her. She knows I love ballooning and she supports me. But I started many years ago, and just married last year.

If someone from India wants to come and wants to learn ballooning, can they?

Well you too can learn Ballooning

We have a balloon school here and foreign people can apply for the course but they can apply anywhere in the world. The prices in Turkey is higher than any other place, it’s around $18000 to get the first license and it takes longer period of time in turkey to get a license. In Spain, they have a ballooning school that costs around $7000 and with 25 flight training they give you a license. Whereas, here because of the traffic we have, in a day there are min 60 balloons which fly in the air, so the pilot experience stands very important.

Foreign pilots who work in Turkey we ask minimum of 500 hours of flight experience. So even if you come here and get a license its not recommended because in Europe you get cheaper license and you can do easily in Europe than here .We have made a little tough in Cappadocia for safety reasons.

Anything else you’d like to say?

I would say in April and May and Sept and Oct, it’s really busy and high season in Cappadocia .And because of the balloon limitations per day, what I would recommend to Indians is better to book in advance otherwise I have seen people with last day inquiries but not everybody was booked because of limitation. So I saw many people, who came, didn't find the balloon and didn't fly. Or they had to extend their days in Cappadocia to have a flight.

Now that we are done with the interview we explore more sites.This trip of mine took me to depth of Turkey with hiking in valleys to pottery to troy to sea to travertines to even trying something as incredible as watermelon jam made by local communities and stories of fun and flirtation!...Hang on because there's so much more to come :)

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Clay Diaries:Top 10 Facts Why Bigger Is Supercool

I gathered myself to run as fast as I can to catch the very glimpse of the plane going up my building,almost hanging onto my terrace,’Can I see it’ I can hear it’ Can I? Yes yes..

And all I could was wish It was nearer so I could see it bigger.I remember in Delhi we have Safdarjung road from where the take off and landing are visible clearly,it was many a times I 'paused' on the road to just watch the planes arrive and go.It is the sense of contentment that I felt every time.

Planes my first crush and my very last.

'Bigger The Better Lufthansa A380' on clay

 ‘Bigger is better’ Always and you’d know why for Lufthansa A380! I don't just have one reason,there are 10 under my kitty.

Now imagine if the plane was bigger,I wouldn't have to hang to my terrace to see,It would be bigger and just there 'on my face'.May be my imagination takes me to a gigantic version of planes where whoosh ,it goes just above my terrace and I could see it the zoom most version as I can.But that is unlikely to happen,because planes sooner or later hide in the clouds which is by far the second most exciting thing to see after the feeling of touching the snow.The clouds bring in the child within all of us,with many of us randomly clicking pictures.I remember even if it was the 17th time I was travelling overseas,I adored the clouds,they look so different at every part of the world,yet we all know inside us,they are all the same.

Bigger planes means 'better my view from the terrace’ as long as it’s still there.

Or wait?Am I being silly?

The experience sure would be more rewarding.To begin with,bigger means either better leg space or more people.More people while travel means more friends.More friends means more conversations.More conversations means more stories.And more stories means a candid another blog post.

Now what makes the flight over New Delhi and Germany all the more interesting is the German language inclusion we are yet to decide on.Imagine your kids travelling by Lufthansa to Germany with a German traveler by his/her side.All she needs is a little chit chat,and she is already known to know the third language we are yet to introduce.

Hallo!Guten Morgen.Wie geht es dir?

Imagine we travelling to Frankfurt with an Indian traveler who was a stranger till now.We share what all places they plan to go and the next thing we know is we are travelling together to those places in none other than Germany!

Bigger means longer conversations,more stories and a new language.

Stretching would be easier !

I wonder why sometimes we are confined to a lookalike of a box when travelling long haul overseas.It tires,and nothing frustrates the lesser leg space. As to why it must be is because the bigger the planes the more the leg space and so we no longer have to confine ourselves in just the seat we are given,we can stretch!

The excise that we miss out daily at our homes,bigger the planes,bigger the passageway,bigger the space to walk or exercise,bigger the reason for a quick heads up for a while!

Bigger means I can stretch.

That ice cream and black forest cake
That we always dream of
But never get ;)

Still holding onto small packets of peanuts and tit bits,the bigger planes means the crew will have no excuse to give us just that.

That means more black forest cake and and some whiskies and some wine and the list goes on.The bigger ,the more I can get the real food.

Bigger means more food.

Yey! That means I could bring in more souvenirs..
The pink flower is actually a soap from Thailand !

Uncivilized as many would say in a civilized thing as a place would be waiting for the crowd to disperse while they still adjust their luggage blocking the passageway and killing our desire to sit relax as soon as we get in but we all face it one time or the other.Bigger means less passage crowd,we can sneak in and bigger means easy luggage space so you don't have to deliberately push in.

Bigger means less passage crowd and easy luggage space.

The two most important thing that I do while travelling is sleep and screen.Watching movies that I missed,and scrolling out screen to view one after another sans ads gives such peace.

Bigger planes means bigger screens and bigger screens means better ‘no-sleep’ time :)

No more tears...

Couples with babies,and their cries.There's nothing more annoying and cute at the same time.Babies are claustrophobic,they sense space.And when they do so,all the people get disturbed.Bigger planes means babies would be smiling.

Bigger means babies would be smiling.

Air hostess are always an eye candy.Immaculately dressed,its gorgeous to see how many passenger talk sweetly as long as they can.Bigger plans means more air hostesses,and more air hostesses means more sweet talk.

Bigger means more sweet talk.

Bigger = Better panoramic view

And also more panoramic Ariel view.

Taking in fact,that the bigger planes may have better window view,because they would cover places more than the normal planes down,we get to see a better world view when the cloud has parted.Frames would be bigger and so would be our candid shots!

Bigger means better frames with ‘world view’ down

While all these facts makes me glee like a kid,there are some more to talk about.Smaller planes shake.Bigger planes fly through.Smaller planes makes me feel like I am in a toy,bigger planes well make me go for the real big deal.All the more reasons to make me happy and you too...

And Bigger means less shake and more happiness!

Santa couldn't have got a better surprise this x-mas

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Cappadocia Hot Air Ballooning:Experience,Turkey

The florescent flutter of balloon lights

Flying over fairy chimneys,the red and the rose valleys and the Greek village of Cavusin,that static feeling of forever lost in eternal with landscapes that make you spellbound with 100's of adjacent balloons in sight makes Cappadocia the  best place for Hot Air Ballooning in the world.I couldn't have imagined a better flight than I had experienced.

                                      Flying in the best "Hot Air Ballooning" site in the world
                                                      Life is nothing but an adventure

With choices as plenty,I went along with TripAdvisor reviews of Cappadocia Voyager Balloons.I was greeted by Pilot Halis who smoothly glided the balloons ending up with a little celebration with Champagne and Certificates and content smiling faces of the fliers at the end.What surprised me,was the smooth landing over the trailer,impressive as bollywoodish,something I had thought would land on the field but didn't.

                  Watch my video on 'When I Did Ballooning In The Best Site In The World' 

Pilot Halis Aydogan says

"The tradition goes back to France.The king of France celebrated the landing of Montgolfier brothers with Champagne.Montgolfier brothers are the guys who did the first Ballooning ride by 1783"

Cappadocia Voyager Balloons:Pre Rise Of The Dawn

                                       I woke up to see the sunrise in a rather different way                                         

I always get caught up between my desire to sleep longer and my enthusiasm to view the sunrise.Many a times,I skip the sunrise as the lazy heart in me refuses to leave my bed.Today was different.To my delight,I got early at around 5am with my first alarm buzz,the pickup time given was 5:30 am from Walnut House,Goreme(where I stayed as recommended on Lonely Planet Guidebooks),Dressed up in smart casuals,I carried a jacket as I was being told in the interactions by mail,that mornings are cold and so is the air up above.Turkey in general was cold in October with Istanbul being the coldest.After reaching Cappadocia Voyager Balloons office,I saw many enthusiasts waiting for their flight. Cappadocia is a pretty place to walk around,I would soon be writing about my 10 days in Turkey in detail in my December posts.We were told to have snacks and coffee if we needed,use washrooms if possible before we had to the field.If you plan to visit Turkey and have any queries,you may ask me down here at the comment box. :)

Cappadocia Voyager Balloons:Rise of the Dawn And Playground of Lights

                                            Pic Source:Cappadocia Voyager Balloons
At the wee morning hours,when the sun was yet to rise,and the darkness still prevailed,the glow of the burner on the balloons at different takeoff areas was a distinct florescent moment,as if we were witnessing the turn-off-turn-on burner as a continuous time lapse live.It looked like a playground of lights and balloons,as if all of a sudden Cappadocia was a party town all set to rise and wander together.

                                                              All smiles by the burner

When we reached our take off area,we saw our balloons opening up with flashes of burner.Eagerly we all stepped in,keeping one foot in and another further in in the basket,so we get into compartments we were told to be in.We were also informed about and told to repeat sitting position in case of bumpy landing.We were told we could move in the compartments to change our positions while taking pictures,but slow moments wouldn't disturb the equilibrium.

Before we took off,our smiling faces of excitement were clicked by their photographer which they told us we can collect by the end of the flight(It costs around 20 TL for one picture but they are quite nice)

Cappadocia Voyager Balloons:The Flight Experience

                                         Drifting into these landscape can be quite like a fantasy

One thing that comes to my mind if I had ever fantasized ballooning was the animated movie "Up" where this old chap chases his childhood dream and flies in the bunch of balloons to a distant home on a cliff only to realize at the end that people are more important than any of his dreams.

               The best part is Ballooning is slow letting the fresh air in moment by moment

It was the feeling of carried away or rather toyed away that Ballooning gives.

It goes on really slow,as if taking its own time,gathering height moment by moment letting the fresh air in from the mornings,and by the time you realize you would be somewhere in the air and things down would be rather small.Since Cappadocia is spread out wide,it makes it all the more interesting.Exchanging space with fellow travelers in your compartment makes you click your pictures in a better way. Halis was kind enough to take mine from time to time,whenever I felt confused on the angles with which I wanted to take so that me and balloons both come in background.

                                                                Love in the air

The flight is no less than a romantic fantasy,as we saw a couple celebrating a moment with kisses in the air.The teens were inquisitive but they kept quiet as they were busy capturing every moment in the cameras.The colors of the landscape subtly changes from sunrise to the time sun is fully out and hence even if the flight is for an hour,the scope of getting bored is ruled out with changes in landscape and environment,all in an hours time.It was kind of Halis to extend the flight by 20 minutes more on request by one of the teens.

Cappadocia Voyager Balloons:Tales From The Expert

We would soon be discussing in/out of Ballooning,quotes from interview with our Pilot Halis,how to pursue Ballooning as career,why you must go with Cappadocia Voyager Balloon,his highs and lows,Safety measures,Ballooning in winters in snow and the likes in the next post but here we discuss about the tits and bits of talks we had in the balloon.

Halis told us in 1998,there were two companies which did ballooning,flying over 1600 people in the whole year.

                             Jumping into the envelope takes out the left air trapped inside!
                                                    .....And we thought it was delicate

Today,alone,there were 2000 people who flew.The growth of ballooning has been exponential the reason being landscape and near perfect weather conditions.

While in Europe,it is considered fortunate if they flew for 60 mornings,
Even in Africa,Myanmar and Jordan,the maximum they can reach is 150 mornings,
but in Cappadocia,its more than 300 + / year,last year it was 328 mornings.

Even in winters,you could see 60-100 balloons in the air.Evening flights are not favored but sometimes during winters,it is.Last year it was 45 evenings they flew.

                                                              So we landed on this....

He randomly asked,if we would know how much the envelope would weigh,as it looks quite light-weighted.To his amusement one answer came quite close to 400 kgs which actually is 380 kgs.He told many people guess around 13-20 kgs and we all laughed.He also told us,that before we roll it to the trailer and when we put inside the bag,if there is still air left which generally is,we jump on it to take the air out.And we thought it was soft and delicate :)

                                                   And celebrated like the Montgolfier brothers :)

As he instructed us to leave the basket after the flight,we slowly and slowly had our wine and our certificates on the field before we head back with loads of memories they'll last for quite a long long time.

                                                    Aha! Finally got my certificate.

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Sublime House Of Tea :Tea For Me Please

                                                                   Tea For Me Please

As UB City celebrated the Trousseau Week '14 last week to deliver the best of wedding planning with lavish outfits of vibrant hues,conceptualized by Uzma Irfan - Additional Director, Prestige Group & Founder, Sublime Galleria,we were in for our humble tea time,this Friday.

 The more I travel,the more I realize it takes toll on my body system so of late I have started drinking the very popular Green Tea as its known world over for the antioxidants that it has.I randomly pick up any from the supermarkets,not knowing which one is best or better,and my eyes constantly search for flavors which dilute the slightly bitter taste of Green tea.However there aren't many variants that I find myself trying and tasting,and even if I do,I am not sure how authentic are they!

I found Sublime House of Tea rather interesting with 12 flavors to make you happy.From sought after bouquets such as Green Tea, Assam Tea and English Breakfast to intriguing localized brews like Moroccan Mint, eclectic admixtures like White Tea with Raspberry and the complex flavors of herbal tisanes, you will find a tea with us to suit every palate and occasion.It is also where I got to know that The white tea is made from the first bud of winters and is better than green tea in terms of antioxidants.You can find Sublime House Of Tea at Big basket,cafe vendors,cafe noir and even small hotels.

There are several legends surrounding tea's origins, and no one is really sure how and when the practice of tea drinking began. All we know is that it started in China and was originally drunk for medicinal reasons. European merchants, especially the Portugese, discovered tea while trading with China in the 17th century and introduced it into their countries. Within the next few decades, tea became a household drink in most European nations across the social spectrum. In the United Kingdom it virtually was elevated to the position of an iconic national brew.
Today, tea is grown in many countries worldwide. While the most celebrated teas come from China, India, Sri Lanka and Japan, many other countries, from Russia to Argentina and Brazil to Mozambique, grow their own varietals.

That Nylon Dip that can be reused once more

Tea is Packed with health benefits

As good as she says, Uzma Irfan,Prestige Group

Sublime Galleria, located on the 8th Floor Sky Bridge of UB City, is India's first Sky Gallery, founded by Ms. Uzma Irfan – Director, Corporate Communications, Prestige Group. Known for its encouragement and support of the fine arts and the performing arts, Sublime holds exhibitions showcasing the talents of not only famous artists but also of up-and-coming artists.Strongly believing in the need to these artists, Uzma Irfan founded Sublime Galleria to help provide a platform for them to exhibit their work. She believes that fine art is an integral part of our rich culture and we should strive to keep these art forms vibrant and accessible to society.

Musical extravaganza celebrating Trousseau Week

That cold "Seventh Heaven",how heavenly does the name sound,isn't it?

Tea tastes so much better sans milk and sugar
And its healthier too

In the dip you can actually see the leaves,this one being green tea
In rose tea,you can actually see the rose petals in the dip.

Starting with Seventh Heaven flavor as cold tea which had a very distinct flavor,we tried the hot variants of green tea,moroccan mint (we called in for this as a choice because the name seemed fancy),jasmine mandarin,Assam tea,rose tea etc.The moroccan mint seems to have a very interesting aftertaste lingering onto your taste buds for quite some time.Two of my favorites were moroccan mint and Seventh heaven,very unusual of the tea taste we are adapted to,and would definitely recommend to my readers who are now bored of the usual Green tea otherwise.

Lakshmi- That content look on his face says it all @gingerchai

Let me figure out what the tea is about @Nithya David - Style Sisterz
In between her hidden tattoos and her passion for style that reflects in the neckpiece

These 'Make In India' macarons swept me off my feet! Really this quick was my expression.

'Make in India' for real.The tea that went pleasantly well with Macarons were actually handcrafted from Bangalore.These tasted so yummy that I was more than shocked to know they ain't being France imported by Cafe Noir.Wow!

Did you know?There are different methods of brewing different teas,

Tea and Macarons make a deadly combo,I must say!

All lit up,UB City..
To follow them on twitter: Sublimetea
And on Facebook: Sublimetea
To know what I wore:Style.Ankionthemove

At the end, we were shown short movie demo by Audisee .Their tagline says "Go from Watching the movie to feeling the movie".Getting into the movie for Audisee means creating the science of perfect home cinema.This is where one does not merely watch a movie but feels all the hidden effects in the audio and visual contents of the movie.Backed by a team with more than 15 years of experience,The sound  of the demo clip was crisp and clear with calibration perfect from base and behind units.

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