From Kanji To Jigarthanda: 10 Drinks From Around India
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India has a profusion of cuisines from different states, and this includes drinks too. Certain states or cities are known for particular drinks that are native to them. Be it cold or hot; alcoholic or non-alcoholic, these liquid treats have become an inextricable part of the food and drink culture of the country. From Kashmir to Madurai, most places seem to have beverages that define regional tastes. Here are ten such drinks: 

Banta soda

Also known as goli soda, banta soda is like fizzy nimbu pani. Vendors push the marble that is used to seal the glass bottle into the bottle and pour the sweet-salty-spicy lemonade into a glass for customers to enjoy. This traditional Delhi drink becomes popular when the heat is at its peak.

Sugarcane juice

Ganne ka ras is extracted from sugarcane after it has been harvested and pressed. It is available across India, and especially loved in Punjab where sugarcane grows in abundance. Sometimes, vendors serve it with a dash of ginger juice or lime for added flavour. 


An Indian alcoholic drink popular in Goa, feni is fruity and slightly sweet. It has been granted the Geographical Indication tag, which ensures that it may only be produced in Goa. Made with the cashew fruit, feni is very potent and an acquired taste. In 2016, Feni was classified as the Heritage Spirit of Goa. 


Recently made popular by the Indian film Meenakshi Sundareshwar, jigarthanda translates to ‘heart cold’ in English. Madurai in Tamil Nadu is known for making the drink, which is usually served at street stalls. It uses milk, almond resin, Sarsaparilla root syrup and ice cream. 


Kahwa is Kashmiri tea made with green tea, saffron, nuts, spices like cinnamon and cardamom, and honey. It’s a beloved winter warmer that’s appropriate for Kashmir’s cold climate. Made and stored in a large metal kettle called a samovar, kahwa is also called mogul chai among Kashmiris.

Kokum sharbat

Another Goan favourite, kokum sharbat is made to beat the heat and cool bodies down. Most grown in the Western Ghats, kokum is a fruit that is sold in a semi-dry state. Besides Goa, it is also used in Maharashtrian and Gujarati cuisine. Kokum sharbat is made by blending kokum and then straining the juice.


Found mainly in the Western parts of India, ookali is consumed steaming hot during the winter. Coriander seeds are boiled in water to make the drink, which is very healthy. Ayurvedic principles recommend consuming coriander for stomach problems, and so the drink may be used to cure such ailments. 

Filter kaapi

An indispensable drink in the Southern states of India like Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, filter kaapi or filter coffee is made by brewing finely-ground coffee with the help of a traditional filter. Frothy, boiled milk is then mixed with the coffee. A special pouring technique is used to cool the coffee before it is drunk. 


Made with black carrots, mustard seeds and asafoetida or hing, kanji is usually made during Holi. It is a traditional North Indian drink spiced with a bit of red chilli and salt. Jars or pots of kanji are prepared and left in the sun to ferment for three to four days. The drink is usually served with vadas made of urad dal. 

Tankaw toraani

Originating in Odisha, tankaw toraani is made with cooked rice (also called ‘anna’)  and is offered to Lord Jagannatha as mahaprasada, which includes 55 other food items. The refreshing summer drink can be found at Ananda Bajara, a food market inside the Jagannath temple.