Here’s what you need to read before you book your tickets to Sulafest 2019

By Bryan Durham - January 18, 2019

Back when Sula Vineyards started Sula Fest at their open-air amphitheatre at their vineyard in Nashik, the focus was on great music, gourmet food, great climate, a nice cosy bazaar and some grape-stomping for the cameras. While the festival has since grown in leaps and bounds, it also means that a lot of those who once thronged to the festival, don’t feel ‘at home’ at their favourite “stomping grounds”.

Here’s what you need to read before you book your tickets to Sulafest 2019
Pic used for representational purposes

On paper, the 12th edition is a “two-day extravaganza” that boast of headliners like British funk outfit Jungle, Indian rapper Divine, DJ Sasha and composer Shankar Mahadevan among a slew of international musicians across genres.

As someone who was an annual attendee at the first five editions of the festival, one has observed the rather modest beginnings of the now-ambitious festival.

Here are five reasons to visit Sulafest 2019…


If you’ve been to Sula Vineyards once, chances are you’ll find reasons to return. If you’re the adventurous sort, you can traipse around the venue, opt for a guided tour around the place and even chill at the amphitheater area as you wait for the acts to begin. If you’re the laidback sort, you can spend the day seated at the balcony area of the main building and enjoy the view. But this is a music festival, so you’re better off up and about. And there’s almost always perfect weather and Instagram-worthy views.


Sulafest has a rather eclectic lineup each year. 100 musicians, 23 acts, 17 genres, 13 nationalities, 2 stages this year alone. As far as popular music festivals go, it goes out of its way to stand apart and not program the usual mainstream names. And so, if offbeat is your jam, it’s the place to be. This year, along with the known names, the likes of Hallouminati, Lucille Crew, Spencer Maybe and Oona Dahl will be doing their thang. Have you heard them/ of them before, though?


When it comes to music festivals, if you’re on your feet grooving to every beat of every artist, you’re going to need to regain your energy. What better than sipping on glass after glass of the choicest merlots, chardonnays, shirazes, rieslings and sauvignon blancs on offer. From what we hear, the food options on-ground are also quite good. But yes, you’re limited by what’s on offer. Which usually is the case at any music festival.


You don’t need to be able to tell your grapes apart, but it helps. Either way, nothing stops you from enjoying any spirit that catches your fancy. From what we’re aware of, you are not wanting for choices. You can sip or glug and we’re positive nobody’s going to judge you (or maybe they will).


But when you speak to those who’ve regularly attended the festival over the last few years, a different picture emerges.


Music executive Sarthak A feels the diversity in the lineup (as opposed to familiarity with the talent of the ‘talents’), “Truth be told, the lineup has become quite obscure/niche over the past couple of years. Yes, there’s the odd headliner or two, but a majority of the artists on their marquee aren’t well known enough to merit a Rs 2,800-4,600 entry charge.”


The issues of the festival don’t stop there. While admitting that the venue itself is a sight to behold and that he’d love to have his family along for the experience, entrepreneur Anil Polaki said, “If you’re someone who plans ahead, you’re going to enjoy the experience. But if you’re a last-minute traveller/festival-goer, you have to understand the venue is far from the city and accommodation options around the venue itself are limited. Available camping options aren’t reasonable, if you haven’t done it before. Also, unless you have your own vehicle, commuting to and from the venue is cumbersome. “


“Also”, added media professional Meghna K, who is a regular music festival attendee, “The party doesn’t end for all of us post 10 pm. For some of us, the party has just started. Nashik, unlike Pune, is dead at night and has no after-party scene. If you’re not one of the campers, your options are rather limited. With Supersonic the week after Sula, you have to pick and choose the festival you want to attend and that choice is made easier thanks to the number of options available regards to travel and accomodation as well as the after-party scenes. Pune is widely known to have a flourishing nighlife scene. The main reason to return Sula if you’ve been there once, is inevitably the lineup. They need to get better names.”

So, there you have it, a rather rounded view of what to expect when headed to SulaFest. Make an informed decision…

WHEN: 2nd & 3rd February, 2019
 Sula Vineyards, Nashik


Early Bird Prices:
Single day: Rs 2,800
Two days:  Rs 4,600


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