Home Brew India Online – FAQ

Story of Arishtam

Fermentation is an art that predates civilization. Mead is older than huts made by primitive men. Farming was first undertaken to get a year-round supply of beer. Our Vedas are full of various recipes and insights of perfecting this art. Arishtam is a branch of Vedic Ayurveda that talks about using alcohol as a delivery vehicle for medicines and curing ailments. Arishtam is a natural solvent that readily absorbs. Hence it is able to extract the medicinal properties from herbs. Also the alcohol can mask tastes of the concoction much more effectively than boiled sugar syrup. This makes arishtam the preferred form of medication.

About Arishtam.com

We are passionate food artisans first. And shopkeepers second. Our product selection is finely crafted. We have assorted imported articles from Germany, UK, USA, India, Singapore, Czech Republic, Argentina, New Zealand & China. We are dedicated to the mission of helping individuals and enthusiasts to source affordable and quality product and help them make their own signature craft brew. Our real passion lies in reviving Indian Vedic brews. 

​We also do conduct workshops and tailor-made experience journeys for our patron’s needs and aspirations. If you have any queries around any aspect of fermentation and healthy living do reach our to us. This includes not only fermenting at home or professionally tasting brews but also probiotics like pickles, cheese, curd, vinegar, kombucha, kefir, Sauerkraut, idly/dosa batter or bread. We are also in the experimental stage of a minimalist healthy lifestyle which includes vermicompost, indoor gardening, hydroponics, and creating a healthy biome and gut bacteria. Do reach to us through our recipe or email and we will be happy to help.

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We use the post office which is the fastest and most economical shipping service and most items are shipped the next day morning. Also, it helps us cater to clients from semi-urban regions and North East which are not adequately serviced by regular courier service. For international shipments especially to the Middle East, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal & Africa, request you to email us the paperwork required. We will be happy to post your consignment, but you will be responsible for customs clearance and paperwork.

Do write to us if you want to use a private courier, like Maruti Courier. There might be an incremental shipping cost.

Every first Saturday of the month we conduct workshops for first-timers. The charge is ₹ 2,500/- for one person and ₹ 3,400/- for a couple. 

Additionally, we do conduct on-site and web-tutorials for professional wine-makers and those with specific requirements. Fermentation is not only about alcohol. We conduct classes for Kambucha, Kefir, Sauerkraut, Kimchi, pickles, and other healthy food transformations as well. I’d recommend you to browse our recipes and the homebrewing book till classes are back on track.

All equipment and hardware (unless customized) come with a no questions asked return policy. All our hardware meets the stringent European standards for portable water, but we will be happy to replace or refund you if you are not satisfied. However, the buyer needs to pay for the return shipping and ensure that the product is in a resealable condition.
The consumables & food ingredients, unfortunately, cannot be returned. Hence request you to try out with a small batch before placing a large order.

₹ 1/- is the minimum order.

We want to promote, legally, the hobby fermentation & food-craft. Hence no order is too small for us. We are flexible, you can even ask your friend in Delhi/Bangalore to pick from our store or we could use a courier company. However, you need to be of legal drinking age.

Home fermentation is your grandmother’s recipe and does not use any shortcuts, chemicals, preservatives, or anything unhealthy. So there is not a store in the world that can even think of beating it in taste and health benefits. It is a probiotic food that not only tastes good but is also nutritious and low on calories. Unlike the packaged food and beverage which is loaded with chemical food colors, preservatives, and stabilizers.

We will guide you on how to change the taste, color, aroma, mouthfeel, and even the ingredients to suit your tastes, health, and nutrition needs. We have a lot of easy to use customizable kits. Also, we put a lot of emphasis on packaging, which will help you make the best packaging in the industry. This will also help you throw an awesome party for your friends and family and boast of your latest hobby.

Fermented food and beverages are natural, healthy, and full of Vitamin B and other probiotic nutrients. They are good for those on a strict diet especially a ketogenic diet or digestive problems. Fermented food help restore the gut bacteria and natural fauna of the digestive system making us healthier, stronger, and with a stronger immune system.

Unlike packaged food, fermentation adds to the taste without any oil, sugar, food colors, preservatives, or chemical essence or any unhealthy additives. This makes homebrew healthier than its commercial equivalent.

During fermentation, the yeast eats away the sugar and adds to the taste. Hence reducing calorie intake and tackling hunger pangs. India is the Diabetic country of the world, and a lot of diabetics are switching over to homemade apple cider vinegar and kombucha as an alternative to soft drinks.

If you have a pre-existing condition or allergies, it is best to consult with your doctor. Fermentation often results in drastically altering the food properties. You can also read about how 8 different types of ayurvedic preparations can be made at home.

We primarily cater to small home brewers who like to DIY and customize their products. In the fittings section of the website, you will find a lot of support to repair and customize your equipment. If you wish to service your equipment and are stuck, do reach out to us at brew@arishtam.com and we will try to help you out.

Warranty support unfortunately is not there at the moment for imported items. Shipping back to the international manufacturer often costs more than the product. That being said, we will strive to help you get the spare parts to help you restore your homebrew equipment, beer kits, and winemaking equipment.

Arishtam can offer competitive prices only by maintaining a very lean inventory. Sometimes the items are not in stock but are abroad or stuck in customs. Once they are back in stock, we will contact you and initiate dispatch. We will recommend you to opt for bank transfer payment mode for back order. This way you can release the payment once the items are in stock.

E-commerce does not come under essential services. As a result, we are not operational during COVID-19 lockdown. We expect to be operational in full capacity by 10th May 2020. If that is too late for you, please reach out us at brew@arishtam.com and we will try to refund or find an alternative for you. We exclusively ship via India Post, so it will be difficult to start shipping before the government postal service is restored.

You are in a perfect place. We are here to help out hobby brewers to pick up new skills. Our advice would be to spend some time on the recipe section or read the home brewing guide. There are tons of youtube videos and online recipes available to start. Pick the simplest one and try to make a small (one liter) batch. Don’t rob yourself of the pleasure of researching to pick up a new skill and go for instant gratification. We also conduct classes on the first Saturday of every month (starting 6th June 2020). Do attend one or reach out to a friend who can guide you with a trial batch.

Being an eCommerce store, it is difficult for us to ship the fragile glass bottles to you. What we can instead offer is a host of fermenters that are more durable for your homebrew kits needs. Alternatively, you can attach an airlock and cork/ grommet to your airtight glass jars and DIY a carboy yourself.

Yes, we are supporting point to point couriers/pickup delivery service. However, we request you to coordinate/email us for the stock availability in the local store before you place the order. Also, the couriers have to be booked at your end/app (the delivery guy needs to give the order reference number and customer name to pick up the order). We typically open at 6 am on Saturdays and Sunday so your order should reach you before you begin your brew day.

Arishtam sells only ingredients and equipment for your fermentation needs. Please contact your nearby liquor store for licensed beverages.

The Vedic name Arishtam means freedom from injury/ disease. Our Vedas and ancient literature describe fermentation at great lengths. They detail out ways to extract the essence from the herbs, ensuring that the nectar reaches every cell & rooh (the spirit) of the recipient without being denatured in the process. Western medicine typically boils the herbs to extract its essence and then use sugar syrup to mask its harsh tastes. Presently, homeopathy and many western medicines are altering their recipes to incorporate the tinctures. Like the ‘Vedic Arishtam’, they have discovered that alcohol is a good solvent capable of extracting the medicinal properties most efficiently from the herbs and has an uncanny ability to make the taste more palatable.

If you are following a good lucid recipe and using fresh ingredients then rarely will you end up with a stuck ferment. However, in the unlikely scenario that you do not see any microbial activity even after 24-30 hours, please follow this troubleshooting guide.

Typically it takes 7-10 days to ferment at 25 Degree Celsius after which you can start bottling your homebrew beer or wine.

Excessive carbonation aka bottle bombs usually happens due to a rookie mistake of bottling too early. Use a hydrometer before bottling to ensure all fermentable sugar has been converted to alcohol/ethanol by the yeast before you proceed for bottling. Also carefully weighing the priming sugar is what it takes to control the carbonation (about 8gm per liter).

India Pale Ale is a craft beer that is hoppy and crispy ale. As compared to lagers a.k.a. bottled beer, it is brewed at higher temperatures and is full of hop aromas and is bitter too. To understand craft beers better refer to the beer style guidelines. If you are still perplexed with the jargon used, refer to our glossary of commonly used terms.

Almost all food-grade disinfectants can be used as a sanitizer. However, our favorites are Campden for winemaking and hydrogen peroxide. Refer to the link for 6 golden rules to sanitization

Wooden wine barrels are a lot of commitment in terms of space, cost, and care for most homebrewers. Instead what we recommend is using a ball lock keg and oak chips. For more details refer to this guide.

Under professional additives, we have tons of fining agents like Bentonite, Isinglass, Irish Moss, and Gelatin that you can use to make your home brew clear. For instructions and dosage refer to this link

Methanol a.k.a. wood alcohol is generated from fermenting wood, pectin, skins of fruits, and distillation. There is a simple WHO-approved test to check for dangerous levels of methanol. The various strains of brewer’s yeast aka Saccharomyces cerevisiae that we stock will produce ethanol by fermenting glucose (grape sugar), maltose (grain sugar) and fructose (fruit sugar). Methanol is a toxic byproduct of fermentation, but its levels are so low that unless you distill your homebrew, you should be safe. If you still want to test for methanol levels, please refer to this document.

If you have placed the order and later on changed your mind, don’t fret. Just drop us an email and we will stop the dispatch. Typically we prefer to ship an alternative or issue a coupon/credit note to compensate. However, if you need a cash refund, then specify that in the email. We might charge a 2.25% Credit/debit card transaction fee that we have to pay to our payment gateway for this facility. (No refund charge for direct bank transfer payments). If your order has been dispatched, then cancellation would not be possible.

Most orders are dispatched the next day. Some orders especially of kombucha and live cultures are shipped every Monday. So that they get delivered on time and don’t die due to weekend office closures. All ingredients (except malt) are shipped via speed post and are usually received within 3-5 days. Malt and bulky equipment is sent via registered parcel service of India Post and usually gets delivered next week. We rely on Government Postal service because they are the most reliable parcel service for rural India, the North East, and other remote areas of the country. Do drop us a note if you want the items to be dispatched via Maruti Courier or Speed post and we will give you an estimate on the additional shipping cost.

Do note that if your product is on backorder, please get the confirmation on the expected arrival day (usually 30 days) before making the payment. For expensive equipment/kits, we often accept token advance to process the order.

So many products around you are fermented: curd, cheese, black tea, coffee, olives, bread, and pickle. Not all fermentation is alcohol.

For centuries, fermentation was the method of choice for the preservation of food, purification of water, and enhancing the taste & nutritional value of the food ingredients. Making alcohol and getting drunk was never the central obsession of society. It had more benign purposes like food preservation in the absence of refrigerator and preservatives.

You can make several probiotic food recipes like pickles, cheese, curd, vinegar, kombucha, kefir, sauerkraut, idli/ dosa batter, or even bread at home which are fermented foods and do not contain any alcohol.

Refer to this link for further details on FSSAI compliance on 0.3% ethyl alcohol permissible limits in your probiotics that you are marketing.

All international trade of plant and animal products require a compulsory phytosanitary certificate. Live plants and animals require quarantine, fumigation, and treatments to ensure that pests, pathogens, and other invasive species don’t accidentally get transported. For more details, please refer to the plant protection and quarantine department website.

Sorry, at this moment, we don’t offer cash on delivery. However, you can place a small value trial order to test our services and check online for our reviews.

Yes, all our parcels are packed in multi-layer discreet packaging. A lot of our customers live in orthodox joint families. Hence, we understand and respect your choices and privacy.

A 5gm of wine yeast costs 100/- and is good for about 5 Liters (6.5 bottles of 750ml each). Wine yeast can produce 15-17% alcohol in 3 days and is recommended for most beginners. We deliver it all across India via our courier partner India Post. If you buy bulk packets of 25gm or 100gm, you can save upto 40% on the price of the yeast.

The beer yeast on the other hand costs 175/- for 5gm and is good for about 10 liters or 30 pints of ale beer.

You can track your order either through my account page or by providing your order number and email address

To track your order please enter your Order ID in the box below and press the "Track" button. This was given to you on your receipt and in the confirmation email you should have received.

Since we ship through India Post, request you to log to India post website with the tracking number in the order status. It typically takes 24 hours for the tracking number to be activated.

In the light of COVID19 restrictions, Green and orange zone services are as normal (a few days delay). If you are in the red zone, you might have to pick up the parcel from the nearly local post office by quoting the tracking number.

Yes, you can ferment homebrew wine and beer without yeast nutrient as well. However, it helps because of the following reasons:

  1. yeast nutrients have YAN (yeast assimilable nitrogen) which is needed to establish a healthy yeast colony. Healthy yeast = faster fermentation, lesser chances of infection (which means safer ethanol production), lesser yeast mutation (better flavor consistency).
  2. It prevents stuck fermentation
  3. Better flavor profile. Nutrients reduce the stress on yeast and prevent the off-flavor production in homebrew beer and wine

Typically bottled home brew beer has a shelf life of 6 months. However, most home-brew beer is consumed within a week to a month of bottling or kegging. However, some people regularly store homebrew beer for up to 6 months successfully. Beyond this, the beer is still safe for consumption, just that it will not taste fresh. However, a couple of factors need to be taken into account to determine the shelf life.

  1. Storage temperature: Beer is like wine, higher the temperature the faster is the degradation in flavors.
  2. UV light: Even a couple of hours in direct sunlight can ruin a perfectly fresh beer
  3. Packaging: Microbrewery Growlers don’t last 2 days because the beer was oxidized during filling. If you see packaging in proper crown sealed glass bottles or stainless steel kegs, 6-12 months life is easy
  4. Oxidation: Once you open the bottle, drink within an hour.

Not more than a few days or max 10 days. Why?

Once the fermentation is over, the yeast dies and settles at the bottom. This yeast then starts breaking down and releasing umami flavors (soy sauce). To counter this, professional brewers brew in conical fermenters. In a conical fermenter, you can remove the dead yeast, and hence the umami flavors from yeast breakdown will not bother you.

Homebrewers, on the other hand, periodically rake their wine and beer from primary to secondary to tertiary fermenters to get rid of the off-flavors from sediments.

Fermentation is probably older than civilization and agriculture. It is a perfectly safe hobby that does not produce any poison or foul smell. When it comes to the safety aspect, follow the 4 golden rules:

  1. If the smell is funky, then it is better to discard
  2. If you see mold or a white-green-black floating film on top then discard
  3. If you are not distilling or fermenting wood or other inedible substances then one need not worry about methanol
  4. If the tastes are odd, then discard. Better safe than sorry.

People have been fermenting beer, wines, and ciders for 5 thousand years across the globe with various simple crude setup. A modern kitchen is much more hygienic and hi-tech than the early man’s setup. So if one could do a safe fermentation in a crude setup, then they can do the same in a modern kitchen. So be assured that if a recipe is followed, then a home brew will not make you sick or poison you.

Absolutely! Can you expect a commercial package to shower you with the same love, attention, and care as a handcrafted beverage? Homebrew is a handcrafted jewel in the form of a beer or wine bottle made with utmost standards.

Homebrewers do not use molasses or artificial colors or flavors that are widely used in the Indian IMFL industry. With natural fresh ingredients as input, the output is simply wonderful.

 A pH of 3.0 to 3.4. is desirable for white wines, while Red Wines have a pH range of 3.3 to 3.6. Your dry wine should have a higher pH, while your sweet wine typically is at the lower end of the range. This is because sweetness can mask a lot of sour/tartness or acidity.

If the pH is too low, the wine will taste like vinegar. If the pH is too high, then you would need an excess amount of Campden and preservatives to stabilize it. Remember Alcohol and pH are the two natural protection for wine.

Some professionals also measure TA (Total Acidity). It is essentially a measure of how much Calcium Carbonate is needed to increase the pH. The simple morality based calculations don’t work with beer with organic acids. There are a lot of biochemicals that can emit H+ ions but they are so weak that the pH meter does not capture it.

Making grape wine is one of the oldest and simplest fermentation transformation. It is older than the Mahabharat, Ramayan, or Bible. You can get the detailed step by step guide in this recipe. Essentially you need grape juice, some wine yeast, and an airlock.

Till 1970, dry yeast was not used commercially for brewing. Most breweries would save a bit of the trub and use it for their next batch. Even bakers would mix a part of their old dough to leaven their new batch of bread. This practice has seen a comeback due to the resurgence of sourdough technique in baking.

Traditional Wine makers throughout Europe would cultivate the yeast biome. They would compost the lees and all the organic residue from the wine making process. This compost is used as a natural organic fertilizer for their fruits and grapes. In doing so the yeast strain that the particular unique natural strain of yeast (which is locally available and isolated) would dominate the biome. The fruits now just need to be juiced and they will start fermenting naturally.

Kveik yeast is also usually harvested and rarely cultured. Traditional households would make special oak rings or towers that they would insert in their brew. The yeast would attach themselves to the wood and this wood would be used to inoculate the next batch.

How to Harvest Liquid Yeast at Home

Today we are going to talk about how to harvest yeast from your old batch. Depending on which school of yeast harvesting you follow, you can either top-crop or bottom crop your yeast. If you are using a conical fermenter, then it comes with a free yeast harvesting attachment. Once you have harvested the yeast, you should wash it. Doing so will get it rid of all the hops and sediments which can lower

You can choose to use fresh liquid yeast by adding some yeast nutrient and making a starter culture. Post that you can:

  1. Use the wet yeast as is. Keep feeding it every 3rd day with some fresh wort to keep it alive. Store it in the refrigerator dairy section (4 degrees) so that its metabolism is reduced. Best if you are planning to reuse the yeast within a month.
  2. Make slants using glycerine. This will allow you to freeze them and store for ~2years
  3. Dry the yeast. Especially Kveik. The home-dried yeast typically have a shelf life of 90-180 days.
How To Harvest and Wash Yeast for Homebrewing
How To Harvest and Wash Yeast for Homebrewing
Watch this video on YouTube

There are plenty of fruits that can be poisonous and dangerous to our health if eaten improperly. Certain fruit peels are difficult to consume and at times are also inedible and poisonous. For example, peels of avocados, honeydews, melons, lychee, pineapple and the likes are considered as inedible. Talking about being poisonous, mostly it’s not the peels rather other aspects like seeds of the fruit, ripe or raw fruit, etc. that one needs to worry about. For instance, seeds of apples, apricots, cherries contain amygdalin, which after coming in contact with acids in human digestive system becomes cyanide. Similarly, cashew fruit, almonds, etc. should never be eaten in their raw form.

Still, looking for answers? Please get in touch and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.