11 Local Drinks of Northeast India you should try once in a lifetime
The North Eastern tribes are known to be self-sufficient. From weaving their own fabric, to harvesting crops, they are quite self-dependent. When it comes to recreation, most of the tribes have their own means of entertainment as well. Local rice beer preparations are among the most common ways of relaxing among the tribes here. Let us take a look at how the 8 states prepare their indigenous alcoholic drinks.
1. Apong – Assam
Apong is a rice beer, which is traditionally prepared by some tribes of North-East India. Apong is an integral part of the life of the Mising (or Mishing) people of Assam. It is brewed in every Mising household. Adi people of Arunachal Pradesh also prepares Apong. Apong is prepared by fermenting rice. The Mishing Apong comes in two types – Nogin Apong and Poro Apong. The Nogin Apong is whitish in colour, while Poro Apong has a dark greenish colour. The method of preparation is different. So, the two apongs also differ in their taste and colour.
Source: Pegu, Nomal Chandra (1981). The Mishings of the Brahmaputra Valley.
2. Chuwarak – Tripura
Versatile Tripuri whiskey
The land of fourteen Gods is proud of being the producer of this intoxicant through an elaborate process. Its versatile nature allows for a variety of raw materials to be used like rice, pineapple or even jackfruit.
3. Judima – Assam
The rice wine which can ward off evil
The Dimasa people of Assam administer some of this wine to newborns to protect them against evil
4. Kiad – Meghalaya
Introduced as a medicinal remedy to the Pnar people of Meghalaya in the 1880s
Think about it. You are walking on the roads of Shillong and spot a jadoh stall. You stop for a drink and taste Kiad. Though the diluted versions are not that strong, a 70% concentrated Kiad is often sold
5. Zutho – Nagaland
A Naga concoction which boasts of a taste like the Japanese sake
Only the Angami Nagas know about the procedure of production of this rice wine. it is different from other rice wines because of the usage of sprouted rice grains
6. Xaj – Assam
The rice beer in which Ahoms are fabled to dip newborns for good luck
Like all rice beers of the North East, the beer of the Ahoms is made by fermenting rice with herbs. It is always served in traditional copper vessels
7.Zawlaidi – Mizoram
Love potion of the Mizos
After the Prohibition on sale of alcohol was lifted (partially), this grape wine hit Tripura with a thunder
8. Toddy – Andhra Pradesh
The intoxicant that the climbers (Gouds) harvest straight from palmyra trees
Toddy is the refreshing drink that the villagers look up to after a tiring day at work.
9. Kodo ko Jaanr – Sikkim
Hot Sikkimese beer
Finger-millet is used to make this brew. Boiling water is added to Kodo ko Jaanr in a tumbler and then consumed
10. Sekmai Yu – Manipur
Sip on this local Manipuri ether while walking around Loktak Lake
Manipuri Segmai people make this rice wine through an arduous procedure
11 Raksi – Sikkim
Limoo priests consume this concoction before participating in the process of possession of souls
This Sikkimese liquor plays a very important part in marriages. After receiving the eloped couple, the boy’s family goes to seek permission of marriage from the girl’s family with Raksi.