India is famous all over the world for its rich culture and delicious and tangy food, Indians are very fond of food but what Indians love more than their food is the drinks that go with them. But what most Indians don’t know is that India is also known for some of the most potent alcoholic drinks that would put any other fancy liquor to shame. While most of these are acquired tastes, we recommend tasting these Indian drinks at least once. Good times, anyone?
Mahua flowers are found mostly in Odisha, Bengal, and Chhattisgarh, they are very beautiful in appearance, they are used in many ways, one of them is a liquor made from mahua, sweet and pungent in equal amounts. The tree also has medicinal properties that make these flowers a priceless commodity.
One of the most famous country liquor in India is Feni, Feni is a world-famous liquor found in Goa. Made from cashews and coconut, it has a pungent aroma and is one of the most widely available liquors. People with low alcohol tolerance should stay away from this drink.
You must have heard the name of the world-famous country liquor “Lugdi” from the movie ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’, this local alcoholic drink made from fermented rice and barley. Found exclusively in the snow-capped mountains of the Himalayas, lugdi is probably one of the best ways to beat the cold. A kind of raw beer, this drink will put all other alcoholic drinks to shame.
Chhang is the local barley beer of Ladakh, It works wonders to fight a cold or simply rejuvenate. A common Ladakhi drink, chhang is made from finger millet which is boiled, dried, and left to ferment for a few months. The ale like the taste of this local drink is what makes it especially delectable in the cold weather.
Zutho is a rice beer that is quite common in Northeast India, Zutho is made by an elaborate fermentation process. The fruity aroma with a sweet-sour taste is the hallmark of the drink. It is a frothy beer served by the locals with roasted millet, soybeans, and red chilies.
Palm wine or palm toddy is one of the most common local alcoholic drinks and South Indian specialties. Made from fermented coconut juice, small huts can be seen selling bottles of these. The way the juice is extracted is almost an art form and we urge you not to try it, leave it to the professionals. Toddy may not be the most potent, but it has a sour taste and is versatile in nature.
Apo (Arunachal Pradesh)
Apo or Apong is another famous fermented rice beer from Arunachal Pradesh, which is also served in Assam. The rice is fried till it turns black. Then, Bhut Jolokia, one of the world’s hottest chilies, is added as a preservative after allowing it to ferment. It is served at room temperature. A sweet, mellow taste with a sharp kick that hits the back of your tongue.
Chuak is a traditional Tripuri rice-beer, popular in Northeast India , chuak is an absolute fruity surprise made with jackfruit and pineapple. Chuak is often consumed on social occasions by the people of Tripura as a ritual.