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Award-winning Idaaya premium rum set to make mark in Indian market

Adaya drinks rum

Idaaya sips rum | Photo credit: Special Arrangements

Delhi’s Karishma Manga Bedi and her husband Samrath Bedi while sipping what she calls a “really delicious rum” during lockdown , came to the unfortunate conclusion that no rum from India was making a mark for itself in the premium market. Karishma, who has a background in branding and luxury goods, translated this observation into a business plan.

Those Good Distillers’ premium dark rum Idaaya was launched in early June this year. It has successfully won several prestigious awards, including Double Gold at the International SIP Awards 2024, Silver Award at the Asian Spirits Masters Asia Made Rum 2024 hosted by The Spirits Business, and the International Wine & Spirits Competition 2024 Elderly group. “The fantastic feedback this wine has received reaffirms us and our belief in what we do,” said the 40-year-old founder and “chief everything” officer.

Adaya drinks rum

Idaaya sips rum | Photo credit: Special Arrangements

According to a report by Straits Research, the Indian rum market is booming and is expected to reach $3.5 billion by 2031. “Rum is experiencing a global renaissance,” Karishma said. “Following gin and tequila, rum is poised to grow significantly. This will differentiate those who are focused on building brand legacy from those who are simply chasing numbers. Our focus is on brand and legacy.

Create a blend

Karishma’s vision for Master Blender Christopher Armes (UK) was to create a premium rum that reflected a modern, sophisticated Indian style. “I wanted a balanced liquid that was neither overtly masculine nor feminine, and avoided too much smoke or sweetness,” she explains.

Together they tasted more than 60 different rums from around the world before settling on a rum from Panama, Latin America. “Our rum is made from this special 12-year-old rum, which is then blended with Indian rum and blended using the Solera process – some of the liquid from the original batch remains in the barrel, thus ensuring For a continuity of flavor profile before bottling. Before infusing the liquid, we clean and seal the barrels using ancient Indian processes such as Dhoopan (smoking) and Lepam (oiling), a process similar to that of Scotch whisky. The different casks used together give the liquid a complex flavor and character, which is very subtle and evident in the final taste of the rum,” says Christopher.

Karishma Manga Bedi, Founder and Chief Information Officer

Karishma Manga Bedi, Founder and Chief Owner | Karishma Manga Bedi Photo Source: Special Arrangements

Using water from the snow-capped Himalayas, known for its purity, is blended with rum in sal barrels through the Solera system (a practice indigenous to the Himalayan region of India), which contributes to the smoothness of the rum and mellow characteristics, hence its name, which means the mysterious energy coming from the Himalayas. On the nose, it offers notes of jaggery, vanilla and spice, and on the first sip, slowly develops notes of caramel, followed by delicious notes of dark chocolate, jaggery, tropical fruits, dried fruits, spiced roasted vanilla and oak.

The impact of the Himalayas

The amber liquid is produced and bottled at a distillery in Jammu in a thick-bottomed glass bottle with etched images of the Himalayas around the bottle. Both the pen cap and the engraving are made of copper, with the former’s design inspired by a compass. “Our mantra is ‘Keep Seeking’, which means there should always be room for discovery and curiosity, and that’s the journey of this product for us,” Karishma said.

The liquid is currently available at duty-free shops at Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru airports and will soon be launched at Kochi and Hyderabad airports, with plans to introduce the liquid to the Indian market as well as the UK in the coming months.

A 750 ml bottle of Idaaya rum is priced at Rs 7,500-11,700, depending on excise duty and other regulations

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