Tuesday, January 10, 2017

An alcohol flavour I didn't know existed

From NPR:
Though the great outdoors becomes more inhospitable when winter winds rise and temperatures drop, there's nothing like wandering through an evergreen forest as snow squeaks underfoot. And once people have trudged stiffly back inside, they can keep those forests with them by imbibing one of the world's many pine liqueurs.

These liqueurs have been a longtime fixture in European hotels and ski lodges. Under the umbrella of "schnapps" (essentially any strong, clear alcoholic drink with little resemblance to the sweetened stuff marketed as schnapps in the United States), Austrians have been brewing their own pine-flavored varieties for generations. Yet it wasn't until the early 2000s that these evergreen spirits finally made their way to America — 2005, in particular, seems to be the magic year. Call it good market research or just good timing, but at least three major pine spirits made their U.S. debut that year.

1 comment:

TimT said...

Some conifers are especially good for brewing; spruce beer recipes are ubiquitous in cookbooks up until about a century ago. Even now some remain on the market in the US though it's only really now being revived as a style. Juniper is probably the one most people are familiar with now - those berries (actually really small cones, like pine cones) are really magical. I've brewed with both of these, also fir. I'd love to use mastic or myrrh.