Sugar, Spice & Everything Nice In These Cocktail Mixes

Simplifying the intimidating art of blending a cocktail, Bartisans cocktail mixers will help you make bar-quality cocktails in the comfort of your home

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Sugar, Spice & Everything Nice In These Cocktail Mixes

It has taken all of us a while to get used to the new normal, which also includes getting the bars to our homes. Most people are trying to make their home bars lit be it in terms of aesthetics, keeping it well stocked, exploring home grown brands and going beyond for mixers. Yes, gone are the days when coke and soda would be your go-to mixtures, step-up your game and go organic! In our search to ditch fizz, sugar and all the unsustainable packaging, we found Bartisans.

Run by a mother and son duo, Jovita and Jordan Mascarenhas, Bartisans specialises in handcrafting high-quality mixers in the form of syrups. Once you open the package, everything is an experience. The real stars are the ingredients; Flowers, fruit, spices and herbs - they’re delicate and balanced. We’re talking ingredients like Blue Pea, Mint, Lavender, Rose Petals, Smoked Pineapple, Tamarind, among others.

The Bartisans' story began with a few “what ifs” during the Covid-19 lockdown in India. What if we could bring happy hour home, since we couldn’t go out anyway? “The first lockdown in Mumbai was my first true vacation in years. I actually had nothing to think about, worry about. Jordan had just returned from his internship at Le Meridien, in Dubai where he had learnt to put together some fabulous cocktails. I was cooking up a storm in my kitchen and he was making us some great cocktails. We realised at that point there would be a target audience which is missing having good cocktails and what if we could have mixers delivered to their home so that they could easily put one together themselves. That’s how it all began. Initially, we started off with fresh on order cocktail mixers which we eventually realised would be tough to scale. We needed to do much more to build a brand eventually, so we researched and developed our bottled versions which had a longer shelf-life and we could then ship throughout India. We got our certification and launched in May 2021.

Goodbye traditional mixtures
We have come a long way from Coke and lime cordial when it comes to what we mix our drinks. However, the drinking experience at home has come a long way from just adding a flavoured soda to your spirit, says Jovita. “Today’s new age drinkers are more woke and want everything to be modern, fresh and rule-breaking. Add to that local, truly unique Indian flavours and you’ve got a winner. There was a time when whiskey drinkers wouldn’t venture beyond their Scotch and single malts but we’ve noticed that today they are willing to try the oddball sours like the Tamarind Orange and Ginger Spiced that we make. 

All about flavours
“We choose flavours that pair well with almost any cuisine. It might sound odd to pair a smoked pineapple with basil but once they’ve tried it, there’s this wow factor which we love as a brand. Also as a boot-strapped start-up, we have to keep in mind that we source local, sustainable and use flavours that are available all through the year.
What makes us different is that we don’t use any preservatives and package our mixers using the traditional method of hot-fill to preserve them. These are not just syrups, our mixers are balanced with the sweet, sour and bitter required to make a good cocktail. The best part is that you can make alcohol-free cocktails with our mixers by just substituting the spirit with a dash of soda,” says Jovita.

Cocktail Revolution
“The cocktail culture in India is actually going through a revolution! With the great offerings at bars and the entire cocktail mixer segment growing the way that it is, the consumer is so aware of what constitutes a good cocktail and is willing to go that extra mile to educate themselves. Cocktail workshops are thriving and people want to know how to not only make a cocktail the right way but also enjoy it well. 
We are yet to come of age as far as cocktail mixers are concerned. That aspect can only be achieved by educating people more about enjoying their drink for its flavour and complexity rather than just the high. Having said that, we are definitely headed in the right direction!”