MadTree employee opens Indian-inspired brewery in Chicago

When longtime friends Ray Schrand and Bhavik Modi decided to open a brewery in Chicago, they knew it had to be unique.


Modi’s job gave him the privilege of traveling to other countries (pre-COVID-19) in Europe, South America and Asia. While he was visiting these countries, he noted that several countries had beer brands that were affiliated with their local cuisine. He thought his home country of India was lacking such an approach, and wanted to bring the idea back to the States.


Schrand, who has an Associate of Brewing Science from Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, was (and still is) working at MadTree when Modi approached him with the concept. Together, they opened Azadi Brewing Company on November 14, which is also Diwali, India’s biggest and most important holiday of the year. Their flagship beers are Kavi, a Cardamom Golden Ale, and Gir, a Kesar Mango IPA.

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