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TASMAC of the Forest

Amidst the beauty of Kodaikanal, which translates to "The Gift of the Forest" in Tamil, you may find your day coming to an abrupt end.  As you look to unwind over a cold brew at a bar, you find out there are no bars. 


The state of Tamil Nadu has long flirted with alcohol prohibition.  In 1983, the state formed the Tamil Nadu State Marketing Corporation, or TASMAC.  It set up liquor outlets, affectionately called TASMACS.  Prohibition came again and was last lifted in 2001.


A shopkeeper said to look for a semi underground building selling beer.  We found a downstairs storefront with a colorful mural stating, "Your Vibe Attracks Your Tribe."  Nice, but it was not the beer store.

Locals pointed us to a different street, in a dirty alley, towards a dark, beat up steel cage frame.  Welcome to your local TASMAC.  Every instinct you have will tell you not to enter this steel frame.  Nonetheless, we were able to obtain a Sterren 7 Premium Quality Lager Beer. 


The beer was at room temperature, chilled is not an option.  A state warning on the bottle proclaims, "Liquor ruins country, family, and life."  Cheers.