New Delhi: One of the world’s oldest distilleries, The Macallan from Scotland, recently launched the world’s oldest single malt, The Reach – an 81-year-old single Scotch malt whiskey that was distilled in 1940.
While it is no surprise that the finest yet has come from Scotland, do you know malt spirits from where else are considered amongst the finest globally? We bet we got you this one! Well, the answer to the question is India, for a few homegrown distilleries have over decades and generations been maturing the finest malt, as per connoisseurs in the country as well as abroad. Here’s a list of the malt maturation experts in India:
Founded by industrialist and liquor baron Dewan Gian Chand of Jammu over 60 years ago, Devans is the manufacturer of the country’s finest matured malt spirits as well as a wide range of award-winning beers, including the iconic Godfather. The company’s Jammu distillery, commissioned in 1961, has since its inception been producing malt spirit, i.e. spirit made from barley. The spirit is matured at the distillery and then supplied to different liquor companies across India. The benchmark for quality for Indian matured malt spirit, the company is set to open up a new-age distillery in Samba that would produce 4500KL of malt spirit and 35,280 KL of Indian-made foreign liquor.
Founded nearly a year after India gained Independence, Amrut Distilleries is one of the foundation dwellers of the homegrown alcohol market in the country. Founded by JN Radhakrishna aka JNR, the distillery has since its early days been a supplier of IML to the Indian military. Based in Bengaluru, the distillery specializes in the distillation of high-quality malt as well as grape brandies. The company currently also owns a re-distillation plant for the production of superior extra neutral alcohol, two bottling units with local bottling setups across seven states and is now a trans-national player in the space.
Spread across a 100-acre lush green campus, Rampur distillery is one of the largest and most state-of-the-art distilleries in the country. It produces Scottish-design malt spirit from barley malt as well as high-grade extra neutral alcohol from grains and molasses. For the unversed, Rampur Distillery was the first in India to obtain internal compliance certifications like ISO 9001:2000 while it currently complies with ISO 9001:2015 for QMS and ISO 22000:2005 for food safety management. The distillery has a production capacity of 2.6 million litres of malt spirit.
A relatively newer player in the segment, John Distilleries was founded nearly 26 years ago with a vision to become a leading Alcobev company in India as well as abroad. It recently launched new single malt named Mithuna by Paul John, which has been adjudged by globally renowned connoisseur Jim Murray as the world’s third finest whiskey. The company owns eight manufacturing units spread across seven Indian states and is currently the fourth largest liquor company in the country. Its flagship Paul John Indian Single Malt had helped the company attain national and global recognition.
A family-run distillery nestled in lush green regions of Candepar in Goa, Fullarton Distilleries Private Ltd produces more than 20 products at present that are exported to at least seven different countries outside India. The state-of-the-art distillery is set up across 11 acres of land and comprises dedicated wings such as Laboratory & Sensory, Demineralization plant & raw water storage, Blending facility and production facility, among others. The plant has an automated line for bottling.