The history of alcoholic beverages goes back to as long as the ancient Greek and Egyptian civilisations. Alcohol, no doubt has been a part of people’s lifestyle from the infinite past. Today, wine and beer are the most consumable alcohol products in the market. What’s more is that the market for alcohol has evolved and transformed dramatically over the years. From the processes to the manufacturing to the sales, the wine and beer market has been booming never mind the governmental strictness that comes along with it.
According to The Alcoholic Beverages Market in India 2017 report by Research and Market, India is the third-largest and fastest-growing liquor market in the world. It also informs that India has very high potential in terms of growth and even social acceptance. Owing to such changes over the years, Anuj Kushwah, Managing Director of Witlinger, says, “In India, we have witnessed a massive change in drinking culture and behaviour in the last couple of years. Consumers are now looking to experience a different style of drinks and are not limiting them self to just one style.”
From Greeks to Romans to India
Hop a few civilizations back and you will find Mead among Greeks and Romans. Mead, which is a derivative of primarily honey, water and yeast, has been one of the pioneers of the alcohol-beverage family. Today, the market is brimming with mead products in Europe but India is a brand-new audience to the idea of Meads.
Moonshine Meadery, which claims to be Asia’s first and India’s only Meadery aims to bring back the oldest fermented beverage into the market with a whole new variety of concocted versatility of meads. Founded in September 2017, it all started when Nitin Vishwas, co-founder of Moonshine Meadery, was travelling in Europe and came across an article in an in-flight magazine about meads. He took some pictures of the article and sent them to Rohan Rehani, his friend and also the co-founder. This sparked off an endeavour to trace the roots of meads and come up with something for the modern day consumers.
So What Makes Them Different?
Rehani points, “Meads are versatile and can range from 3% ABV to 21% ABV. While the mead making process is closer to wine, our meads are carbonated and sessionable at 6.5% ABV. This places them squarely in the space between beer and wine.” Moonshine Meadery promises that meads are made from 100% pure honey, leading to a natural craft beverage with no artificial colour, aroma or flavour.
Bourbon Oaked Apple Mead, the Kaffir Lime & Vanilla Mead, the Guava Chilli Mead, a tart Strawberry Mead are some of the popular results by this brand.
A Fruitful Addition
Another “fruitful” addition to the existing Alco-Bev options is a cider style product developed after processing Chikoo as called in India and Sapodilla in English. Fruzzante, claims to be the world’s first Chikoo Winery brand.
How it all Started?
With the revolution in the fruit processing industry, Chikoo was falling short of packaged products. Due to its high perish-ability, small vendors avoid Chikoo in their fruit shops. This single fact sparked off into an idea to be explored and ventured into. Priyanka Save, co-founder of Fruzzante recalls, “The initial idea was to process Chikoo into some form that can be packaged. After several trials with by-products, we realized that it’s in the nature of Chikoo to ferment and hence decided to go with a cider-style beverage.”
Dominic Rivard, the popular winemaker was roped in for the development of the product. Rivard is today, the chief winemaker of Fruzzante. Moving beyond the scheme of grape wines, this new addition of Chikoo Winery into the world of wines opens up avenues for consumers looking for healthier options in the Alco-Bev make. The fact, that it is gluten-free and purely vegan only adds greatly to the positivism of it.
Change Owing to Consumers
Kushwah points out that people nowadays are drinking because they like the taste and not to get drunk. He further highlights, “I believe consumer demand will drive the Indian Alco-Bev industry for years to come with more brands entering the market that will be produced locally with locally sourced ingredients.”
Both these products are meant for the modern, urban consumers who are looking out for versatility in drinking options. While the former aims to bottle the microbrewery experience for the audience, the latter looks forward to working on various other fruits which can be bottled as wines and made available to the masses.