Long before India’s burgeoning bar scene spawned celebrity mixologists and cocktails with cult renown, the most refreshing, distinctive drinks were made by village grandmothers and at roadside dhabas: puckeringly sour aam panna, made from green mangos, or the musky, beet-red fermented vegetable juice kanji.
Each region has its own traditional drinks for summer and winter, and many are believed to hold medicinal or health benefits. They offer a dazzling complexity and interplay of sweet and salty, sour, bitter, and floral flavours. But the popularity of these concoctions has waned as young Indians increasingly switched to sugar-laden Coca Colas or Sprites instead.
But now these traditional drinks are making a comeback in the most unexpected places.
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