Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Honey Liqueurs

We threw a New Year's weekend gathering, and one guest brought a bottle of Barenjager Honey Liqueur. (Teuke + Koenig, Germany, 35% alcohol). We all tried some - and we all liked it. Anyone who doesn't have a problem with how alcohol tastes would like it, because it tastes like alcoholic honey. We didn't mix it with anything, just sipped it from small glasses.

Since that was so great, and we ended up at a liquor store the next day, the same guest decided to buy a bottle of a different type of honey liqueur. The Old Krupnik Polish Honey Liqueur (Poland, imported by Adamba Imports, 40% alcohol) has two bears drinking under a tree on the label, so he went for that. This one doesn't taste nearly as much like honey as the first one, but honey is a very significant flavor. It is more complicated, as the bottle hints by saying "Prepared from bees honey and various spices and herbs according to Polish recipes many hundred years old." I call it good, but it wasn't as popular as the Barenjager.

I had some with hot black tea, and this may be my new favorite hot alcoholic drink. Today, a coworker told me that Old Krupnik is actually a traditional Polish tea "additive" and his first exposure to the liqueur was when he ordered tea at a Polish bar. So I was being culturally authentic and didn't even realize it.

Recommendation: both, eventually; if you favor sweet tastes you would like the Barenjager better; if you favor spice (like chai tea without milk or sugar) go for the Old Krupnik.

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