Each weekend it is the same old usual affair of alcohol and party everywhere. Most of us have tried the best of wines, beers, champagnes, gin and tonics and even had a fab time with it. However our alcoholic journey remains incomplete if you miss out on these exotic Indian local drinks.
India has several states, each having their own liquor made in unique and fascinating ways that we do not know much about. We list for you the desi daarus that area must-try for all of us, especially if looking for a different taste to party with.
This is a rice beer the Santhalis and Mundas offer to their Gods and is made with ranu tablets (combination of about 20-25 herbs). This beer produced by the tribal women is also taken as a gift to a friend's or relative's house and is one of the most sought after things in dowry. It is served cold and is familiar to several states Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.
Apong, from Assam is another form of rice beer made by fermenting rice and is traditionally prepared by the Mising (or Mishing) tribe of Assam. The Adi people of Arunachal Pradesh prepare it in their household too. The Mishing Apong comes in two varieties – Nogin Apong and Poro: Apong. The Nogin Apong is whitish in colour, while the Poro: Apong has a darker, greenish colour. The method of preparation of the two is different, and so are the colours and flavours.
What desi liqor list is complete without Feni in the mix? Feni is a spirit produced exclusively in Goa and has two types - cashew feni and toddy palm feni, depending on the original ingredient. This classic “country liquor” is not allowed to be sold outside the state of Goa. And while Bollywood may have glamourised it, the this liquor is not for all. The blandness and the pungent smell may be a serious turn off if one is not used to it.
A Naga concoction which boasts of a taste like the Japanese sake. Only the Angami Nagas know about the procedure of production of this rice wine. it is different from other rice wines because of the usage of sprouted rice grains.
This royal liquor from Rajasthan is much like whisky and contains a blend of as many as 21 secret spices—kasturi being one of them. This is only consumed during extremely special occasions, and it is had in small amounts so you don’t get inebriated too quickly. Harsh on the throat initially but extremely soothing after a few sips, especially when it’s 9 degrees outside. Try it with Thumbs Up if you must.
While other liquors have their distinct colour, this is mostly colourless, and isn’t very strong. Mahua flowers are fermented to produce the alcoholic drink Mahua (or Mahuwa), a country liquor in India. Mahua is an essential drink for the tribal men and women during celebrations. The main ingredients used for making it are sugarcane molasses and dried mahua flowers.
The classic Palm wine is known by many names such Toddy in Andhra Pradesh in various parts of India. The toddy tappers go about tapping the liquid from palm trees in the warly hours of the day. They would and go about selling it during the rest of the day. The flavour varies from region to region, depending on the collection and fermentation process.