Hyderabad brews: City to get microbreweries by end of this month

dc-Cover-vadr7vkb4rgkonnp8lhh057c91-20160716232003.MediMicrobrewery equipment

After months of waiting and stalling and delays, Hyderabad’s thirst for its own labels of brewed beer are finally here, with the Excise Department finally issuing licenses on Wednesday to properties in the city to begin serving beer. You could be holding your first mug of locally brewed beer from a microbrewery in Hyderabad by the end of July.

“It’s been very popular in cities like Bengaluru and Gurugram, and people from the IT sector are the main players,” says restaurateur Sanjay Batla, who has two such properties coming up in the city.

He adds, “The advantages of this kind of beer is plenty — it doesn’t have any chemicals, you won’t put on a beer belly, it doesn’t have glycerine… when you travel internationally and have really good beer, that’s how it will be. We have to be an international city, and this helps us do that.”

While around 20 such licenses have been given out, most of them have been from local vendors, adding to the indigenous factor of the beers. The Excise Department had been accepting applications for licenses since October 2015, but it has taken them almost nine whole months to begin issuing the licenses.

Sanjay says, “It’s the first time so they need to check everything — making sure that the people here are capable of brewing beer, that they’ve trained their teams internally. We have to get good equipment, and then we need a good brewmaster, and raw material — hops and malts imported from countries like New Zealand and US.”

But before we get too excited, these variants will only be available to drink at the bars themselves, and not be bottled. “We’ll be having about six flavours (varieties) at first. But it’s only for glasses and pitchers, we can’t bottle it and sell it to them. Our (the state’s) policy is a little different, so it doesn’t allow us to sell by the bottle,” says Venkat K.C., who manages a property and says that they will be up and running by the end of the month.

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