11 Indian Origin Gins to Include in Your Home Bar
From a clear spirit that once used to be in the corner of the bar and a small section on the menu, the Indian gin scene is now bustling with offerings to cater to a diverse clientele and in intriguing flavour profiles, with locally sourced botanicals from a spice found in your kitchen shelf like coriander to the trending butterfly pea flower. Here's a list of homegrown gin brands to consider stocking in your home bar.
TERAI Indian Dry Gin
TERAI is an award-winning artisanal gin that can be used to make classic cocktails like the Negroni, Tom Collins, or a Gin & Tonic. It is packed with spiced botanicals that are sourced from Khari Baoli, Asia's largest spice bazaar, and the aesthetically designed bottle with each stopper handcrafted in the toy town of Channapatna will look good in your spirit collection.
Price: Approx. INR 2,700 for 750ml
Tea Leaves - 2 tsp
TERAI - 60ml
Garnish - Lime peel
Measure 2 tsp of tea leaves - we recommend Jodhpur Blend by No.3 Clive Road. Tie it in a muslin cloth.
Infuse 60ml of TERAI with the tea bag for 1 minute.
Strain the infused tea into a shaker with ice.
Throw the infused TERAI from one tumbler to another until your martini is nicely chilled and sufficiently diluted.
To serve, pour the cocktail into a chilled Martini glass and garnish with a lime peel.
Stranger & Sons
With a sense of freshness in the front palate from the citrus peels, a warmth in the centre from spices like nutmeg and mace, and a sweet finish from the cassia bark and liquorice, Stranger & Sons offers a three-dimensional flavour profile. Additionally, the gin's adaptability enables you to experiment with flavours.
Price: Approx INR 850 for 200ml
Stranger & Sons G&T
Stranger & Sons - 45 ml
Indian tonic water - 120 ml
Garnish - Slice of ginger
Mix and pour on the rocks into a highball glass garnished with a slice of ginger.
Cleary Good Gin
Cleary Good Gin is India’s first blue gin and is a perfect blend of citrus and juniper. The gin, which gets its colour from butterfly pea flowers, turns pink when citrus is added, making it a great option for a cocktail. It makes for an everyday tipple as it’s comparatively light on the pocket.
Price: Approx INR 245 for 350ml
Clearly Good Tom Collins
Clearly Good Gin - 60 ml
Sugar Syrup - 30ml
Lemon Juice - 30ml
Garnish - Orange slice
Add all of this in a glass with ice and top it up with soda. Garnish with a slice of orange.
The subtle notes of botanicals rather than an overpowering flavour are what make it a versatile craft gin. The hemp gin works well for straightforward cocktails like Bees Knees, Negroni, or a Mule. It has an earthy, warm flavour and a sweet finish.
Price: Approx INR 999 for 700ml
GinGin - 45ml
Lime juice - 20ml
Sugar syrup - 10ml
Mint leaves - 6-8
Add Gingin, lime juice, mint leaves, and sugar syrup in a glass, stir it and slightly bruise the mint, top with ginger beer.
This classic London dry gin is a bartender’s favourite. It’s clear and crisp with juniper, lemon, and ginger that is perfectly balanced, making it an adaptable spirit for cocktails. Greater Than would go wonderfully in a Gimlet, Gin and Tonic, or Martini.
Price: Approx INR 1,650 for 750ml
Salt Lime Rickey
Greater Than Gin - 50ml
Lime juice - (juice of one lime)
Pinch of salt
Garnish - slit green chilli
In a highball glass, add ice, GT gin, lime, and salt, and top up with soda. Garnish with chilli and serve.
Hapusa Himalayan Dry Gin
While the Himalayan juniper continues to steal the show in this bold and complex gin crafted from Indian botanicals, there is the fragrance of gondhoraj lime and earthy undertones of turmeric. Hapusa tastes best as a sipping gin served at mountain temperature - neat, chilled, and without ice!
Price: Approx INR 3,200 for 750ml
Short Story Gin
Short Story gin is an 11-botanical London-style gin that is complemented by the freshness of juniper and citrus notes. It is adaptable and makes for a great drink from highballs to classics. Try it in a Midnight Negroni, Short Story Sour, and Anti Milanese.
Price: Approx INR 1,850 for 750ml
Short story gin - 50ml
Campari - 10ml
Fresh grapefruit juice - 30ml
Elderflower syrup - 10ml
Svami grapefruit tonic water - 60ml
Take a highball glass and add in all ingredients except for the tonic water.
Add in ice and briskly stir for a few seconds to chill and dilute the cocktail.
Top up with 60ml of Svami grapefruit tonic water and mix the cocktail evenly by slowly
lifting and dropping the ice in.
Serve immediately with a half-moon slice of fresh grapefruit.
Boasting of women-centric production and organically sourced botanicals including hemp from BOHECO, Samsara is a London Dry Gin with a portfolio of five gin variants, each one distinctive from the next. Amongst them, the contemporary white gin is extremely versatile to play with concoctions, while the pink gin is best served on the rocks with a splash of ginger ale.
Price: INR 1,850 for 750ml in Goa
Birds and bees
Samsara Gin - 60ml
Organic honey - 15 ml
Grapefruit Juice - 30ml
Hemp seeds - 1 tablespoon
Shake and strain and garnish with grapefruit slice and a rosemary.
Amrut Nilgiris Gin
Amrut Nilgiris is a gin made of botanicals from South India, including Nilgiri tea, betel leaf from Mysore, and spices from the Western Ghats, with the intention of developing a profile that best represents the rich flavour of the blue mountains. It's a gin that's great for sipping as well as simple cocktail concoctions that don't overpower the gin's flavour and aroma.
Price: Approx 1,650 for 750ml
Nilgiris Elderflower Collins
Nilgiris gin - 50ml
Lemon juice - 20ml
Sugar syrup - 10ml
Elderflower cordial - 10ml
Soda water, for topping up
Herb sprigs, to garnish
Shake the gin with the lemon juice, sugar and a dash of elderflower cordial in a cocktail shaker.
Pour over rock ice and top up with soda water. Garnish with a sprig of your favourite herb.
Tamras Gin is made up of 16 botanicals, with mosambi, Nilgiri tea, and mint being the signature Indian botanicals. It has a refreshing mouth feel with spice undertones, a clean smooth finish, and is suitable for all palates. It is best for classics like Martini or Negroni.
Price: INR 3,199 for 700 ml in Karnataka
Equal parts of Gin, Sweet vermouth and campari.
Stir and pour into an old fashioned glass on a block of clear ice.
DOJA, a one-of-a-kind handcrafted gin with a blend of traditional botanicals like fennel and cardamom from India and Sansho Pepper and Hinoki from Japan, is for the evolved gin aficionados. The gin needs to be savoured on the rocks to fully appreciate the botanical infusions.
Price: Approx INR 3,700 for 700ml
While it is a sipping gin that tastes best on the rocks, you could try a DOJA Sour or Martini.
And here's other Indian gins to stock in your home bar:
Sector Gin, a London Dry gin with a smooth finish; Jaisalmer Indian Craft Gin with botanicals like sweet orange peel, juniper berries & lemongrass; Malhar Gin, an ode to the Indian monsoon which works as a lovely cold sipping gin; Tickle Gin, a cold pressed Goan gin handcrafted with premium botanicals; Jin Jiji, an Indian dry gin with a tea inspired variant; and Matinee Gin crafted with unusual botanicals including snake saffron.
We are pleased to see India's homegrown gin scene flourish in all the right ways, but a reminder to please be mindful and drink responsibly, folks!