Nepali Drinks

July 2023
Alcoholic and non-alcoholic traditional drinks have long been a significant component of Nepali culture. Alcoholic beverages, including Chyang, Raksi, Tongba, and Aila, have a long history in the nation’s traditions and are frequently used in connection with religious ceremonies, celebrations, and social events. These alcoholic beverages are often manufactured using regional ingredients such as millet, rice, and barley, utilizing traditional brewing and distilling methods.
Here are just a few of the many tasty drinks that are offered in Nepal. Each beverage has a unique cultural significance and contributes to the diverse culinary traditions of the nation.
  • Chiya (Nepali Tea):

Chiya is a popular traditional Nepali tea made by brewing tea leaves with milk, water, and a blend of spices such as ginger, cardamom, and cloves. It has a rich, aromatic flavor and is often served hot. Chiya is a staple beverage in Nepal and is enjoyed throughout the day.

  • Raksi (Traditional Rice Wine):

Raksi is a traditional Nepali alcoholic beverage made by fermenting rice. It is typically homemade and has a mildly sweet taste. Raksi is often consumed during festivals and special occasions in Nepal, and it is known for its smooth texture and unique flavor.

  • Tongba:

Tongba is a traditional drink from the eastern region of Nepal, particularly in the hilly areas of Limbu and Rai communities. It is made by pouring hot water into a tall container filled with fermented millet or barley. The drink is sipped through a bamboo straw called “pipsing” that filters the liquid, and it is enjoyed for its warmth and distinctive flavor.

  • Chhang (Traditional Barley Beer):

Chhang is a traditional alcoholic beverage in Nepal, made by fermenting roasted barley grains. It has a slightly sour taste and is often consumed during festivals and social gatherings. Chhang is served in a wooden or ceramic container called “tongba” and enjoyed by sipping it through a narrow bamboo straw.

Aila, a Newari beverage, is created by distilling fermented grains including millet, rice, and cereals. In addition to social drinking, aila is an essential part of celebrations in Nepal. Using traditional methods, this liquor is frequently made at home. Newa cuisine restaurants in Nepal do sell it even if its preparation is not yet cost effective. It may be found in nearby Newari restaurants. It is one of the “50 most scrumptious beverages in the world,” claims CNN.

These are just a few of the varied and flavorful drinks available in Nepal. Each drink carries its own cultural significance and adds to the vibrant culinary traditions of the country

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