Low taxes on alcohol mean that cheap restaurants and bars can sell beers from as little as ₹100, Old Monk rum from ₹30 a shot. Sikkim also has a minor sideline in wine blending: Sailo red tastes somewhere between Madeira and a rich plum juice.


In homestays, don't miss a chance to taste the classic local speciality known as chhang/tongba/chee in Bhutia/Nepali/Lepcha. Typically you'll receive a mini churn-like container filled with fermented millet grains. Add boiling water then sip regularly through a bamboo straw, periodically adding more boiling water to moderate the brew's strength.