India is a whisky drinking nation with many Indian whiskies on the world’s top-selling list (by volumes), however, the world does not consider it whisky and so do the finer palates of India as most is made from molasses or a mix of molasses made spirit which is cheaper and grain spirit. Nonetheless India has begun to make a mark in the fine whisky world, and it all started with Amrut a decade back. Here are the Single malt whiskies from India for the discerning.
From the house of Pernod Ricard, the French liquor major, the L77 is blended and bottled in Nashik. The double cask expression ages in ex-bourbon and wine casks and comes with the map of India on the label.
Made in Bengaluru, it broke into the world whisky charts when Amrut Fusion was adjudged the 3rd best single malt in the world in 2010.
Paul John named after the founder is made in Goa and was launched in 2012. The Paul John Kanya was the best Asian Whisky of the year in the whisky bible recently.
Master Distiller: Michael D’souza
Made by Radico Khaitan a liquor major, Rampur is distilled in Uttar Pradesh and is a single malt. Like the first two malts, Rampur too took the outside in approach where it was launched for the foreign markets before it came to the country.
Master Distiller: Anup Barik
Woodburns - Tale of Oak
This is made at Fullarton distilleries; Goa and they call it the contemporary Indian whisky. Their mixed drinks and cocktail focussed approach seems to be working.
Master Distiller: Aman Thadani
From the house of Mohan Meakin know for the Old Monk rum, Solan is perhaps the best kept secret to the malt whisky fans in India. The distillery in Kasauli, Himachal Pradesh produced Solan No 1 a malt whisky for decades and has recently launched the Solan Gold a single malt.
Peter Scot Black
Makers of Hercules Rum and Peter Scotch whisky, the Bengaluru based House of Khoday set foot in the Indian single malt category with the Peter Scot black and launched it at a much higher price point than the pioneers in the scene.
Inspired by Mount Kamet in Uttarakhand, Kamet is the latest entry to the Indian single malt scene. Working with different casks for aging including ex-wine.
Master Distillers: Surrinder Kumar, Nancy Fraley
Made in Haryana in the namesake town; Indri Trini is three wood aged whisky, ex- wine, PX and bourbon casks. It is made by Piccadily distilleries, the largest independent manufacturer and seller of malt spirits in India.
GianChand is a premium Single Malt Whisky with a unique character which it owes to the place it hails from- Jammu. The malt is named after Dewan Gianchand the founder of Devans Modern Breweries Ltd.(1961) and a pioneering industrialist from Jammu & Kashmir. The company has grown from a liquor bottling unit in its initial years to one of the leading manufacturer of malt spirit & beers in the country.
Ugar, 4 year old
A single malt from the Belagavi, Karnataka is aged for 4 years. It comes from Ugar Sugar works (found in 1939) who started their distilling business in in the 60s.
An artisanal single malt from the house of Diageo is made in Alwar Rajasthan. It is named after Godawan, the Great Indian Bustard a bird once found all over India, is now nearing extinction, and finds its last refuge in Rajasthan.
Imported Wine Brands in India with Mumbai Prices