History of Soda In India: Soda drinks are very popular in India. And if you are a 90’s kid you will definitely get nostalgic once you hear- ‘bunta soda’. Well, it is called ‘fotash jol’ in Kolkata and ‘goli soda’ in the South. It is a popular Indian street-side drink, widely available at different street-side shops, in codd-neck bottles, with a marble inside.
Several Indian soda brands have won hearts and given global brands like Coca-Cola and Pepsi a run for their money throughout the years. But, do you know how Soda gained its popularity in India?
History Of Soda In India
According to historians, the popularity of soda as a beverage spread to England from the start of the 19th century. The beverage eventually made its way to India, where it was imported by Britons as a luxury good. Henry Rogers, a chemist in Mumbai, founded what was probably the first “aerated water” facility in western India in 1837. Indians quickly developed a love for this carbonated drink, or club soda as we know it.
5 homegrown Soda brands
The brand, which was founded in 1837, offered Indians more than just fizzy drinks. Mumbai relied on well water in the early 19th century, which the locals described as “yellowish-brown dirty liquid with bad stench.” Eventually, there was a cholera outbreak that claimed hundreds of lives. People subsequently began drinking carbonated water, which was said to assist the body kill bacteria and viruses. At this point, the Parsis recognised a commercial opportunity in the new carbonated beverage the Britons were consuming.
If you’ve ever visited an Irani Café in Mumbai, you’ve undoubtedly seen a bottle of the Palonjis’ luscious raspberry soda. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to state that visiting a Parsi restaurant would be incomplete without indulging in the beverage. Since its founding in 1865, Palonji’s has dominated people’s hearts. Palonji soda can now be purchased in Delhi, Bengaluru, and even London (beyond Mumbai).
Dinshawji Pandole, a Parsi businessman, launched Duke’s in 1889. When touring England with a Parsi cricket team, Pandole gave the beverage the name of the brand of cricket ball he had been using. Duke developed flavor-infused sodas, which at the time generated a lot of excitement in the marketplace.
Cotton & Co.
The journey of this enduring brand began in Kolkata in the year 1906. Many people’s childhood memories of ginger ale and ice cream soda were brought back by the brand. Unfortunately, worldwide soft drink brands found it difficult to survive the intense rivalry in their industry. However, if you search around Kolkata, particularly in the Esplanade area, you might discover some restaurants that still serve these delectable beverages.
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