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April 16, 2024

Fine, made-in-India liquor to gift your favourite man on Father’s Day

Ruhi Gilder  
Gone are the days when we only drank alcohol at bars and clubs. The Covid-19 pandemic has normalised drinking at home, with mom and dad. This Father’s Day, spend quality time with your family as you pop open a bottle of these fine, homegrown liquor brands.  


Drifters Breweries 

Drifters Breweries delivers cold and smooth beer right to your doorstep in Mumbai and Pune. Let your dad pick from their beer menu of lager, Irish red ale, cream stout, apple and kokum ciders. After all, there’s no better way to celebrate Father’s Day than with a beer and a burger. 
Gateway Brewing Co. 

Craft beer has boomed in a big way through the pandemic. Microbreweries like Gateway Brewing Co. offer all their beers online, available to order in 1 litre growlers. Launched in 2014 by Navin Mittal, Gateway Brewing Co. has also recently gone the retail route, launching their store at Gateway of India, Mumbai. You can take your pick from options like the wheat beer White Zen, Munich lager, Bombay Porter, Mosaic IPA and apple cider. The brewery has also launched special Father’s Day hampers containing a pair of branded beer glasses for you and your dad, an upcycled wood and nail bottle opener and a hand-stitched tote bag.
White Owl
White Owl Beer
White Owl Beer
Available across Mumbai, Pune, Goa, Bengaluru and Delhi. For those who prefer light beers, pick Spark, White Owl’s Belgian Wit, which is infused with orange peel, chamomile, coriander and oat. For the dads who love beers that pack a punch, try out Spike, a traditional German Weizenbock beer with a 7.9% ABV! Other varieties from the craft beer brand include ACE, an apple cider ale and Diablo, an Irish red ale.


Photo Courtesy: Jaisalmer
Packaged in a bottle your father is sure to appreciate, Jaisalmer gin takes inspiration from the idea of Jaisalmer’s royal heritage. It is about ‘luxury meeting royalty’, and is derived from the ancient Indian knowledge of herbs. While it retains the flavour of juniper berries, the botanicals are sourced from all over India. Coriander and vetiver from Jaisalmer, sweet orange peel from central India, cubeb berries and lemongrass from the south, Darjeeling green tea leaves and lemon peel from western India.  
Photo Courtesy: Pumori
Pumori’s journey started in 2016. Founded by 28-year-old Aman Thadani, the delicate, nuanced gin strikes a balance with Himalayan juniper and botanicals like orange and lemon peel, coriander seeds, rosemary, anise seeds, cardamom, cinnamon, almond, nutmeg, vanilla and licorice. It’s for all the fathers that love their G&Ts with a bit of spice. 


Maka Zai Rum 
Photo Courtesy: Maka Zai Rum
Rooted in Goa, the go-to state for craft liquor producers, Maka Zai serves up White and Gold varieties of craft rum. Indian in spirit, their logo is the Olive Ridley turtle, native to Goan shores, and their name means ‘I want’ in Konkani. The dark rum has notes of the finest praline, dry dates, figs, caramel, cinnamon, vanilla and honey, with a creamy mouthfeel. The Bartender’s Edition white rum is made with sugarcane grown in and around the Panchaganga river in Maharashtra. Since the fermentation and distillation take place in the region where the cane is grown, the rum picks up the influences of the red soil; making it floral, sweet, spicy and herbaceous.  
Segrado Aldeia 
Photo Courtesy: Segrado Aldeia / Instagram
Portuguese for ‘Secret Village’, Segredo Aldeia draws from Goa’s rich history to recreate a full-bodied spirit. Segredo Aldeia is available in two types; a white rum and a cafe rum. The white variant has flavours of sweet wood, herbs, peaches and cream, caramel and vanilla. The deep amber coffee rum has hints of toffee and vanilla with undertones of tobacco, leather and a dark chocolate finish. 


Desmond Ji 
Photo Courtesy: Agave India
The search for a good agave spirit in India led founder of Desmond ji, Desmond Nazareth, to the Deccan plateau. This is where he found the elusive blue-green agave plants and established a distillery in Andhra Pradesh. This homegrown liquor brand has distilled spirits, liqueurs and cocktail blends, including Mahua spirit, 100% Agave spirit, and 51% Agave Gold (Oak Finish), that are produced in the facilities of Agave India. 


Billion Air Vodka
Billion Air Vodka - 1
Billion Air Vodka
Launched by Vrun Murpana, Billion Air is a pure, gluten-free vodka that is sourced, distilled and blended in the USA and bottled in India. Distilled six times, it is a unique combination of 98% American corn and 2% American wheat. The spirit undergoes a proprietary process that leads to a smooth finish and sweet aftertaste.
Rahasya Vodka 
Photo Courtesy: Rahasya Vodka / Instagram
Yet another craft spirit to come out of the sunshine state is Rahasya vodka. Entrepreneur Varna Bhat, is the brains behind the brand. The vodka is made from high-quality corn and wheat grains from Punjab, and the beverage claims to be uniquely Indian in spirit.  
Smoke Vodka  
Photo Courtesy: Smoke Vodka / Instagram
Smoke Vodka takes the title of India’s new age vodka with its sleek packaging and branding. It’s distilled 5X times using ultra-modern charcoal filtration. Available in a classic variant, made with Basmati rice sourced from the foothills of the Himalayas, and an aniseed or saunf infused vodka, which has notes of fennel and liquorice. It’s the perfect option for a dad who loves his cocktails.  


Photo Courtesy: Amrut
Amrut has been distilling their homegrown single malts for well over seven decades now. Though recently the single malt has received a great deal of recognition from international whisky bodies. The Amrut Fusion bottle was rated “3rd Finest Whisky in the World” by Whisky Bible 2010, so what better whisky to get for any dad who loves his drams? 
Kamet Single Malt Whisky

A relatively new launch in the world of Indian single malt, Kamet whisky is aged in a combination of ex-American Bourbon Oak, ex-French Wine Oak and ex-Sherry Casks, which give its oak spice notes. The whisky is laden with notes of fruit and spice, vanilla, dark chocolate, finished with complex nuttiness. The name is inspired by one of the highest peaks of India, Mt. Kamet in the Himalayas.
Paul John  
Photo Courtesy: Paul John
From the sunny beaches of Goa, this non-chill filtered malt was founded by Paul P. John, who endeavoured to create the Great Indian Single Malt. With three flagship expressions, and several special editions, including Christmas and peated cask whiskies to choose from, you can pick the one that suits your dad the best. Long-time whisky drinkers will love their Mithuna expression, which has a palate of coffee mocha, tinged with orange peel and delicate spices.  


Grover Chêne Grande Reserve Chardonnay 
Photo Courtesy: Grover Zampa / Instagram
For white wine aficionados, this Grover Chardonnay is ideal. Aged for nine months in French oak barrels, it’s a rich, creamy wine with a slight toasty flavour and hints of vanilla. If you’re planning to cook a Father’s Day special meal, keep in mind that the wine pairs beautifully with delicate fish, crab, prawns, pasta and risotto with spring vegetables and mildly spiced creamy Indian curries.
SETTE by Fratelli Vineyards 
Photo Courtesy: Fratelli
SETTE 2017 is a blend of Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Made from the rocky and sandy soils of Fratelli vineyards located on the banks of the Nira River in Akluj, Maharashtra. The wine is aged in French oak barrels for 14 months, which merges the pleasant notes of wood with the wine. SETTE has a  balanced vanilla flavour and a vibrant finish and goes great with lamb and other red meat dishes. 
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Ruhi Gilder


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