Brewing a Coup of Chai

With innovation, diversification and a well-made brew, Chai Point and Chaayos are taking over the café culture in India

It is a pleasant Tuesday morning in end-February when I step into the Chaayos outlet on Golf Course Road in Gurugram. I enter my phone number in the tab placed on the counter while an attendant takes down my order — “Adrak tulsi masala chai with cardamom extracts”, I say and pay. Sounds the usual, right? Now here’s where the unusual starts. There is no one rushing to make the tea as per my requirements. Nor is it poured into a cup from a flask. Instead, the order is automatically passed on to a fully automated machine that kicks into action. Water is poured into a bowl placed on an induction stove. As it boils, there are multiple pipes pouring in milk and the required extracts — as per the customer’s order — and soon, the tea is ready to be served.