Gautom Menon, Founder & Chief Brand Officer, Wild Tiger Beverages
What’s the one thing you’d like to change about the Indian market?
Our fixation with foreign brands and still going gaga over the word “imported” on a label. It’s time we embrace home-grown brands.
Who do you think sets drinking trends in India?
Drinks entrepreneurs, well-travelled Indians, and bartenders who have international exposure and knowledge.
What’s the most overrated drinking fad/ drink in India at the moment?
New gin drinkers going overboard and trying to single out one botanical to blame for their hangover.
What’s the next “big thing” for India?
Rum. It’s after all the true spirit of India. We are the historical birthplace of sugarcane and rum. #RhumDeBasanti
What’s the best motivation for your team?
Spreading stripes worldwide is our ambition. Getting our customers to ‘Roar for More’ keeps us on the trail to earn our stripes.
Which is your favourite liquor brand ad campaign?
“If Carsberg did”. The ads were innovative and a perfect surrogate for India.
Which is your favourite bar in India and abroad? Why?
Aer at Four Seasons, Mumbai. I’ve always loved an al fresco experience and the views of the ‘Queen’s Necklace’ and Arabian Sea are simply spectacular. The mojito there isn’t bad either (winks)
Then there’s Atlas in Singapore. It’s mesmerising with its Art Deco and high ceilings which lends an aura to the establishment. Their gin collection is even more impressive I’d say.
Which of your competitors gives you sleepless nights? Why?
It’s not competitors but policy makers who give me insomnia. The laws of the land are stacked against us liquor producers.
Who’s the one fictional character you’d like to have a drink with?
Rocky Balboa, with Eye of the Tiger playing in the background, of course!
If you were alone on a desert island, which drink would you want with you?
‘Tiger Colada’ made with Wild Tiger Coco Rum would be purrrfect – regardless of whether it is being sipped alone on an island or with a mermaid!