As Chai lovers ourselves, we couldn't wait to have Chhabra's Chai be part of our December Box. We love the friendship that the founders share and we certainly love their take on traditional Indian Chai.
Newly-established Chhabra’s Chai is created by three close friends and fellow chai aficionados. As chai became more popular and mainstream in the recent years, they were excited to scour the city to search for the perfect spiced tea. However, quickly they realized that many western chai offerings were either often overly sweetened, or failed to create the intense and complex flavours that define chai. Most importantly, as a diabetic, co-founder Pratima had another challenge of finding authentic-tasting chai that was also 100% natural and sugar-free. That was when they decided to take things in their own hands.
Chai has always been one of the go-to hot beverages for us, and we are very particular about the taste and the spice that goes into making the perfect warm and comforting drink that is essential during winter. Hence, when we tasted Chhabra’s Chai, we knew from the get-go that they KNOW their chai.
Equipped with their passionate knowledge towards traditional Indian chai, Pratima, Casey, and Ruby are on a mission to redefine our generations understanding towards the drink. To Chhabra’s Chai, the spiced infused milky tea is more than just a beverage – it has a rich history that has played an important role in many different cultures for centuries. And to understand the origins of Indian Chai is the very first step to appreciating the beautiful taste of this humble drink.
From our first interaction, we knew Pratima, Cassey, and Ruby had a lot to share about their vision and mission. So we decided to ask them a few questions.
Mission of Business/Company
Chai is a spice infused milky tea steeped in rich history and has played an important role in many different cultures for centuries. Traditionally, Indian chai was viewed as a herbal medicine rather than a recreational beverage with emphasis placed on the health benefits of each spice. We believe that this has been forgotten about, many shops often serve chai that has very little in common with the origins of Indian chai and its longstanding historical story.
Our mission is to redefine our generations understanding of chai, and bring the intense chai flavours, from all over the world, to the masses.
What inspired you to start this business?
As the flavours of chai became more popular, we looked forward to exploring the city in search of the perfect brew. But as a diabetic, co-founder Pratima found tasting the more popular blends on the market particularly difficult. Many western chai alternatives, are often overly sweetened or fail to create the intensely defining flavours of chai. Unable to find an authentic tasting chai that was also 100% natural and sugar free, we founded Chhabra’s Chai.
What keeps you going?
Each other! Behind the Chhabra’s Chai brand is three close friends, who have known each other for over 10 years. We get so excited when we get together and discuss our future plans for the business, especially as we all share the same belief and passion for the product. We love bouncing ideas off each other, getting creative and brainstorming ways to make sure Chhabra’s Chai keeps getting better and better!
What are some of your highlights and challenges since starting your business?
Highlights: Hearing positive feedback from individual customers as well as our stockists makes all our hard work worth it. Seeing people express genuine enjoyment of our chai and interest in learning more about it, especially those that don't usually like tea. It has also been great connecting with customers that are located outside the UK.
Challenges: Getting in front of the right people. With little connections in the industry we found it difficult seeking expert advice as we just didn't know who to speak to. On top of this, as three young women we found it difficult to be taken seriously as business owners.
What tips do you have for budding entrepreneurs?
The best advice we ever received was from our first entrepreneurial event and it was to “Just get on with it!” Whatever service or good you are providing just get something out there and don't be scared to ask of feedback. We would also say running a business isn't easy so keeping a positive mental attitude is really important and maintaining belief in what you are doing!
Recommendations of books that you think have helped you in your journey?
- The Lean Start-up by Eric Ries
- The Founder’s Dilemma by Noam T. Wasserman
- The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living by Meik Wiking
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