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Top 3 Indian Whisky Brands, Distilleries and Suppliers

Indian Whisky News, Reviews & Resources (4) Top 3 High-End Indian Whisky Brands

As of 2006 most distilled spirits labelled as "whisky" in India were a form of Indian-made foreign liquor, commonly blends based on neutral spirits that are distilled from fermented molasses with only a small portion consisting of traditional malt whisky, usually about 10 to 12 percent. Outside India, such a drink would more likely be labelled a rum. According to the Scotch Whisky Association's 2013 annual report, unlike in the European Union (EU), "there is no compulsory definition of whisky in India, and the Indian voluntary standard does not require whisky to be distilled from cereals or to be matured. Very little Indian 'whisky' qualifies as whisky in the EU owing to the use of molasses or neutral alcohol, limited maturation (if any) and the use of flavourings. Such spirits are, of course, considerably cheaper to produce than genuine whisky." Such molasses-based blends made up 90 percent of the spirits consumed as "whisky" in India in 2004, although whisky wholly distilled from malt and other grains, was also manufactured and sold. By 2004 shortages of wheat had been overcome and India was one of the largest producers. Amrut, the first single malt whisky produced in India, was launched in Glasgow, Scotland in 2004. After expanding in Europe it was launched in India in 2010.

By 2022 India produced many whiskies both for the local market—the most lucrative market for whisky in the world—and export. Indian single malts comprised 15% of the local market in 2017, increasing to 33% in 2022. In the three years to 2022 sales of Indian malts increased by an annual average of 42%, compared with 7% for imported rivals.

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    Indian Whisky News, Reviews & Resources
  • Amrut - since 2004. It is the first single malt whisky to be made in India. Amrut or amrit is a Sanskrit word which can be translated as "nectar of the gods", "nectar of life", or "drink of the gods". The company translates it as "Elixir of Life". The brand became famous after whisky connoisseur Jim Murray gave it a rating of 82 out of 100 in 2005 and 2010.
  • Godawan Single Malt Whisky - since 2023. "Once upon a time, Godawan or the Great Indian Bustard could be seen all over India. Now only 150 remain. Rajasthan is now its sole and natural home, thanks to the longstanding tradition of its people to live in harmony with nature. It is the living embodiment of our culture of preservation and therefore the rightful and proud mark of our single malt."
  • Rampur Double Cask Single Malt Whisky: £62.50.
  • Rampur Indian Single Malt Whisky - since 1943. "Rampur is an Indian Single Malt Whisky, hand-crafted and aged in the foothills of the Himalayas. The Himalayas provide polar opposite of climate conditions throughout the year with the flavour of the famous Indian Summer giving Rampur an added dimension and depth. Rampur Select is an Indian Single Malt Whisky, handcrafted and aged in the foothills of the Himalayas. Styled as 'The Kohinoor of Single Malts'."
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