Distilling rakija is known as pečenje. Maraschino, the most well-known, is made from cherries, but has a kick. Growing up, for fruit, means ripening or reaching maturity. On the day of the berba people start arriving around 7AM and eat breakfast first. Lika is also proud of drenovača or rakija od drijenka (cornelian cherry brandy). There are numerous beers in Croatia for you to try whilst on your holiday – perhaps the best known are Karlovacko (brewed in Karlovac – hence the name), Ozujsko and Pan. Often served before a meal, it is more than just a drink. This is the case with smokovača [fig rakija], rogačica [carob rakija], and medica (honey rakija). It's important to continue measuring the alcohol content of the rakija, which we do with an alcoholmeter. Now, let’s visit the Đurčević’s vineyard and fruit groves. Whether you're making rakija from a fruit grove or a vineyard, you'll have to participate in the springtime process of pruning – or rezidba in Croatian. Michael had a hostel worker chase him around insisting he have his welcome shot at 10 AM when he checked in. Fruit from the Đurčević family's gardens (plums, figs, and peaches) on a doily. It shouldn’t be too hot, as it can burn the fruit, but it has to be strong enough to turn liquid to gas. Again, which rakija is best is really up to taste and it varies from person to person. This is one of the younger men whose duty is to carry a huge container on their back. The local spirit is so important in Balkan culture and cuisine that no trip to any of the Balkan nations would be complete without sampling rakija at least once or twice! When she’s not dreaming of far-away lands, Maggie enjoys drinking copious amounts of coffee, Harry Potter, and coaxing stray cats into her home. The normal alcohol percentage of Rakia normally is 40%, but home made Rakia can be as strong as 80%. Here’s ones of the reasons šljivovica stands out. Plums come in various types. Another is the immunity-boosting rosemary. We’ve already shared the story about the most popular Croatian wines with you, and now is the time to cover some traditional Croatian spirits, especially rakija. The herbs traditionally used in travarica are believed to have medicinal purposes. Those set aside for lozovača are washed and placed into a kaca, an open barrel. Another is the immunity-boosting rosemary. The most beloved liqueurs in Croatia are orahovac made with green walnuts and višnjevac with sour cherries. But experienced rakija producers know exactly when it’s time for the next step. Have you got your copy of the Croatian Desserts cookbook? In this phase of rakija making, you'll have some time to kill. – or the attention of too many hungry Slavonian rust mites. Standard Size 750 ml (1) Maraska Kosher Slivovitz 750ml. Dubbed as a South Slavic version of Vodka, it’s a drink that will make you … Some of the most popular types of rakija are medica (the honey rakija), višnjevača (the cherry rakija) and šljivovica (the plum rakija). Then, the fire beneath is lit. Did you know that rakija cools and wine warms the body? In Croatia, rakija is many things: a delicacy, an art, a pastime, or a sport, depending on who you ask. It includes rakija recipes, deep dives into different sorts, and locals' stories that give it a cultural context. A glass of rakija should be enjoyed in quite a few sips. Your email address will not be published. Just a couple of more steps before you get set up! Then you’d maybe want to opt for a slower drinking, accompanied by a glass of water. It gets its true flavor, aroma, strength, and richness after the first distillation. Yes, that's me! This is usually lozovača because it has the most neutral taste of all rakijas. Rakija, a hard alcoholic drink obtained by distillation of fermented fruits many of us love to prepare in the wintertime over the fire. Your email address will not be published. Once the fermentation is complete, the mash is diluted and boiled down twice then transferred to barrels or other receptacles to age further and develop the flavours. For daily tips, join my super engaged FB group Croatia Insider. Sugar is also added, as well as vanilla, lemon and orange peels, and juice. Like most families, the Đurčevićs use an older sort of the European plum (Prunus domestica) known locally as šljiva mađarica or bistrica. The best kazans are made from copper and those for non-industrial purposes hold from 50 to 200 liters. Or, if you've ever made Croatian friends… Chances are, they've bestowed upon you a bottle of rakija or wine at some point. While the berba is ongoing, another woman and I cook food for later. That means if you click a link and make a purchase, we make a small commission at no extra cost to you. Can wait to taste orahovac again in Croatia! Rakija is one of the great fabrics of Croatian society. As an Eastern European country, it may come as no surprise to learn that beer is pretty popular in Croatia. 9. Croatian sour cherry liqueur visnjevac steeping in the sun. In Lika, for example, there is rakija made from hawthorns: glogova rakija or glogovača. "Komovica, however, is lower quality rakija than lozovača", Ica's son Đuka notes. It is one of those things you must try, even if it’s not really your thing. These are the Đurčević family's favorites: "Vilijamovka is the best", Đuka claims. No matter the type of Croatian rakija, Ica reveals one common similarity. Regardless if its distilled in a back garden or in a commercial setting, however, the process is more or less the same. Our saying zdrav ko dren [healthy as a cornelian cherry] confirms that belief. Grapes, on the other hand, are cut from the vine with gardening shears. Required fields are marked. The exception to the rule is when you drink rakia with friends in a bar, as the main drink. "These are friends and family. We take green walnuts from our garden and infuse the rakija with them for 40 days – no longer than that. Travarica is usually made with lozovača as a base, with various herbs added in. Somewhere in between is rakija with steeped fruit but without added sugar. How to Travel from Zagreb to Belgrade by Bus, Train & Car, How to Get from Sarajevo to Mostar by Bus, Train, Car or Tour. You must have heard of Rakia (or Rakija) at one point in your life, if not it is a extremely popular fruit brandy among South Slavs. “The kaca isn't covered with a lid, because some air has to get in for the fermenting process”, Ica says. You may also encounter Osjecko (in fact, the oldest beer in Croatia – first brewed in 1697 and from Osijek, again hence the name); the dark beer Tomislav an… It's a chance to see people you haven't seen in a while. Variations aside, one thing matters the most: domaća rakija [homemade brandy] is the best. The fermented fruit brandy liqueur is as popular as any other alcoholic drink in the … The citizens of the Balkans have a superstition about making eye contact when first toasting and they are very serious about it. Rakia or Rakija is the collective term used for fruit brandy popular in Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Serbia and other Balkan countries. For orahovac we use lozovača as a base. The first distillation can yield almost pure alcohol; around 85% to 90%. Find out which types you can try in Camping Village Šimuni! We like WorldNomads and always use them for our trips – click here to get a quote from WorldNomads. Leave it as is (lozovača, šljivovica, vilijamovka… see chapter 2), Flavor it by steeping (travarica, smokovača, medica, biska…), Sweeten it by turning it into a liqueur (višnjevac, orahovac, pelinkovac…). Need I say more? In Croatia, rakija is many things: a delicacy, an art, a pastime, or a sport, depending on who you ask. ", The Đurčević family vineyard has done its job. The length of fermentation depends on the temperature. Check your inbox for the email from Andrea Pisac. Rakija lowers blood pressure, making us feel colder. That's Ivan Đurčević the third", Ica chuckles as he explains his family suffixes. To create this guide, we enlisted the master help of the Đurčević family. The only exception is pelinkovac, which is both bitter (the word pelin means wormwood) and sweet. drink rakija is Croatia, Montenegro, and Bulgaria, Serbia is an excellent place to learn more about the spirit first-hand. Lots of people come in, the harvesting gets done quickly and then there is time to relax and hang out. ", she adds, laughing. If you’re anything like … Locals take turn renting it because not everyone distills at the same time. But those who work hard during the berba itself get treated to another special occasion: the famous after-berba feast. Drink it as a aperitif at family lunch, or treat your old friends and enjoy the good time while memories and stories … See our privacy here. Other grapes are pressed for juice and wine while the pomace leftover is made into komovica. Rakija (rah-kee-yah) is the catch-all term for any kind of spirit distilled from fruit (and not just fruit) in Croatia, and it translates to ‘brandy’. Based in Slavonski Brod, their rakija- and wine- making tradition dates back over 100 years. There is no universal rakija recipe. The longer the fruit ferments, the bigger the krovina grows. The alcohol content of rakia is normally 40% ABV, but home-produced rakia can be stronger. Pečenje lasts multiple days, or even weeks, depending on the size of the kazan and the amount of fruit. Thanks, Adam. This magical mush, also known as kom, is a pomace of grape peels, pulp, and seeds. So next time you make a toast, think about dedicating it to fruit flies; without which your glass would be empty. FV: “Rakija is a very popular drink that is served primarily in Croatia, but also in neighboring countries like Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia, and Montenegro. This Croatian alcohol has been produced and perfected in the region for thousands of years. "My family has been making wine and rakija since around 1900. There are rare exceptions, though. It is usually served with ‘smokve,’ which are dried … Rakija is the most popular spirit in Croatia. Our most common dishes for the berba are chicken paprikaš [a hearty stew enriched with paprika spices] as well as prase na ražnju [pig on a spit]. In smaller towns and in homes, a glass of rakija … Did you know that Croatians use rakija in baking? Rakija is one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in Croatia. There are some pretty intense liquors in Croatia. It is served at the beginning of almost every meal and usually taken with figs. click here to get a quote from WorldNomads, 8 Great Reasons to Visit Cartagena, Spain, The Best Coat for London Winter (or Spring & Autumn! 10 centimeters of krovina are taken off the top of the fermented fruit. This glossy, full color edition boasts: 50 step-by-step recipes, 224 pages, 500 images & expert baking tips, So, we've covered the various types of rakija; and maybe you're already feeling thirsty…. The most popular alcoholic drink in Croatia is, in fact, rakija. “Every other rakija has to be distilled twice, except šljiva”, Ica says. This particular Croatian rakija is made from the so-called Williams Pear sort, also known as the European Pear. Click here to buy a bottle of rakija online! But we do show our thanks in other ways”, Mirjana says. This makes liqueurs sweeter and less strong. During the ageing period, sometimes other flavours are added to the rakija in order to develop its flavour further. Many consider it a secret weapon and refer to it as … Never drink solo. Hiring workers would make more sense financially. The former has 30-40 % alcohol content, the latter only 18-20%. Say “na zdravje“ if you’re drinking rakija in Slovenia!) Every culture has its spirit, and rakija is Croatia’s. However, exact grape varieties are less important when it comes to rakija than when it comes to wine. Meals & Dining Customs. It’s the grape rakija that is most common in the coastal regions of Croatia… ", Ivan Đurčević the second – who goes by the nickname Ica – tells us. Homemade Rakija … The Balkans region is where Rakia is famously from, with around 8 countries known for making and consuming the drink regularly. Every fall, Croatian families harvest grapes for wine. It should be Let's drink a little wine to warm up.". Though, as rakija experts will tell you, the making of this respected Croatian alcohol should be bestowed only upon choice fruits. The rakijas produced by the Đurčević family aren't the only types out there. How to make rakija in 10 steps according to Croatian locals, 7 yummy spreads Croats love to put on their bread, Croats teach the world: how to do less and achieve more, How to cure a hangover in Croatia: best home remedies, Croatian Sweet Pinca Bread: 5 secrets and a secret recipe, Croatian desserts: 13 sweets the world should know about, Best of Croatia in 2017: 20 super events that made us proud. It's totally up to you and your taste. Rakija is usually made from overripe fruit (most often plums, however, really any fruit will due) that is collected and mashed so the juices are released. And here in Croatia’s darling fortified city, where bar tables often face the sparkling Adriatic, locals have … If you want to sip rakija off of an extensive menu with a knowledgable staff, head to Rakia Bar which is located not far at all from Republic Square. Rakija (or rakia) is considered to be the national drink of the Balkan nations. And this liquid is rakija. The fruit has to ferment for a few weeks before rakija cooking can begin. Rakija is a kind of fruit brandy native to the Balkan peninsula and you will be hard-pressed to escape the region without at least being offered the beverage. This alcoholic gas is then diverted into the cooling cylinder, where it turns into liquid. This brew is considered a cure, not so much a drink. Ica explains, "Once the fermentation process is over, the krovina will be black in color. When it comes to rakija, 100 liters of liquid will usually provide you with 5 liters of quality rakija. Drinking from a glass like this actually makes it quite difficult to drink rakija as if you’re doing a shot. Ica explains, "Rakija cools the body down when it's consumed, and wine warms it up. That's why we say, 'The vineyard seeks a servant, not a master' [Vinograd traži slugu, a ne gospodara]. You might even hear that something is žensko piće [a woman’s drink] if it’s not as strong as a real rakija. Šporki Makaruli. It’s a strong drink – domestic forms of rakija will have an alcohol content of over 40%, commercial brands slightly less – so it’s important to keep track of how much of the stuff you’re quaffing. Pick Up Limited quantities may … Disconnecting people since 1273Is rakija … The procedure is very simple and once you try it, you will make it a tradition. The liquor goes down quite easily, so make sure to pace yourself when drinking as you never know how strong it will be! In the Đurčević family, this process is overseen by the watchful eye of Ica or Đuka who make sure the fruits don't catch disease. šljivovica/slivovitz – plumlozovača/loza – grapeskomovica – grapesvilijamovka – pearjabukovača – applesadna rakija – fruit medleydunjevača – quincekajsijevača – apricotdrenovača – cornelian cherry, travarica –steeped with herbsmedica – steeped with honeybiska – steeped with mistletoesmokovača – steeped with figsrogačica – steeped with carob, orahovac – walnutvišnjevac – sour cherryborovniček – blueberriesmirta – myrtlekruškovac – pearMaraschino – Maraschino sour cherrylimončelo – lemonarancino – orangerozulin – rose petalsteranino – Teran red winepelinkovac – wormwood and other herbs. Which is your favorite Croatian rakija? Ingredients. King of the Balkans’ backyard drinking scene, rakia is the traditional firewater of choice in Dubrovnik. Croats say peći rakiju [to cook rakija]. If you're looking to lowers your stress levels, throw in a few sprigs of thyme, too. There is a distinct protocol when it comes to drinking Rakija, and if you don’t want to make a social faux-pas, follow these rules on how to drink rakija properly and you will survive any Balkan trip while seeming like a local! Rakija is made from fruit. Next is komovica, rakija made from groždani drob – everything that's left over after grapes are pressed and their juices drained. SPIRIT OF RAKIJA When it comes to rakija, our advice is to enjoy it in a true Croatian spirit. Thou shalt know what to say. For example, made from European plums gives you 12 liters of quality rakija per 100 liters of liquid. Notorious for its high alcohol content and easy drinking culture, no trip to the Balkans is complete without sampling … Lozovača (also known as loza or lozova rakija) is created from grapes picked right off the vine. But having the harvest on a voluntary basis keeps the communal bond aflame. Have you tried rakija? Rather, the whole distilling period is when the men hang out, sip on rakija from last year, tell jokes, and reminisce on old times. ", The Đurčević family vineyard during zrioba. Liquor from plums, mistletoe, figs. One of the best ways to get to know a culture is through its food and drink and learning about what rakija is and how to drink it is an important part of any trip through the Balkan nations. The kazan and the surrounding area turn into a makeshift man cave over the course of the pečenje. Eat before or while drinking rakija. Rakijais a very strong fruit brandy, with up to 40% alcohol content. Simply put, rakija … 4 reviews. I think rakija can be bought all over the world in specialized shops. Rakija (or rakia) is considered to be the national drink of the Balkan nations. Notorious for its high alcohol content and easy drinking culture, no trip to the Balkans is complete without sampling this intoxicating liquor at least once. You’ve gotta savour what you have while you have it! Ica, who learned the rakija ropes from his grandfather and father, helps us pinpoint the different types of Croatian rakija. It’s a strong drink – domestic forms of rakija will have an alcohol content of over 40%, commercial brands slightly less – so it’s important to keep track of how much of the stuff you’re quaffing. The most common fruit-based rakijas get their names after the fruit they are distilled from. During fermentation, a top layer forms called krovina. Let us know in comments! We’ll find them near Slavonski Brod, at 200 m high on what the family endearingly calls Ivanovo Brdo, [Ivan's hill]. Harvest times and methods vary depending on your fruit of choice. The kazan used by the Đurčević family in their 2020 pečenje. We don't add any yeast, the yeast microorganisms on our grapes do their part.". Wherever you may find yourself in the Balkans, be it in Serbia, Croatia, Macedonia, or elsewhere, you’ll rarely be far from a bottle of rakija. Blossoms are pollinated by bees, and then the tree or vine bear fruit. Travarica is a great choice if you'd like a rakija that's tasty and, per tradition, medicinal at the same time. In Gorski Kotar, the liqueur borovniček, made with foraged blueberries, is thought to strengthen the blood. A better question would be which country makes the best Rakia overall? Rakia, rakija or Raki, is the collective term for fruit spirits popular in the Balkans. It's very acidic, and if it was mixed into the rest, it would make the rakija sour. Sugar and fruit are added, then steeped for a while in the sun. Maggie is a co-founder and writer for The World Was Here First. The most popular variation of the brandy is slivovica, or plum rakija, but it is common to find it made from everything from grape, apricot, quince, and fig. You only leave fertile branches that will bloom. Liqueurs use rakija as a base. The last rezidba is usually during Josipovo, the holy day of Saint Joseph, celebrated on March 19 across Croatia. Soon it will be my son Đuka's. When a bucket is filled, a putunjaš comes over to empty it. Rakija is healthy. They use their eyes, nose and ears to spot the signs: when the krovina turns black or the fermented fruit stops making fizzling noises. So, participating is completely voluntary. Pinky promise! One of the ways to insult someone in Croatia is to call them a ‘solo trinker’. Just as there are wine regions in Croatia, there are also rakija regions. "Ok, if I had to pick one, then loza, or vilijamovka.". She's the most generous of all. Warmer wheater shortens the fermentation process. Berba doesn't end with the harvest itself. It might seem counterintuitive, but it's true. The Đurčevićs have multiple grape varities planted in their vineyard. Learning about how to drink rakija and how rakija is made is one of the best things about travelling in the Balkans. "Then, the fruit is left to grow up!" Some people add coffee beans to orahovac, but we prefer it without. Rakija might be a classic souvenir to take home following a trip to Serbia, but it isn’t some sort of gimmick alone. These grapes are specially separated from those that go into winemaking. "Each type of plum has its own unique taste and aroma. Yes, we … Although literally translated as ‘Dirty Macaroni’, don’t let the name alarm you. A commonly added herb is sage, thought to heal respiratory ailments and contain antibacterial properties. Šljivovica (also known as simply šljiva) is made from plums. Thanks, Gary. Ripening lasts from spring through summer for most fruit. with insider tips on how to enjoy Croatia like the locals do! White plum, for example, is even a bit reminiscent of rosemary! There is also a cylinder through which the condensation is cooled, and another container for the alcohol that comes out. Fruit is healthy. Croatia. But there's still a long way to go in the process of making this alluring Croatian alcohol. Croats don't discriminate. Because of its alcohol content, rakija is dubbed a man’s drink [muško piće], while liker is commonly offered to women. Grapes are then categorized. I am happy you enjoyed this rakija guide . Don’t be ashamed if you didn’t know to sip it before your first foray into rakija drinking, however. Ica chimes in, "Guests can stay for a long time, though, it can turn into a party. Though you can certainly get mass-produced bottles of rakija from a supermarket or a liquor store throughout the Balkans, the majority of rakija is made at home and locals will assure you that the homemade stuff is the right one to drink. Flavored Brandy (1) Category. Confirm your subscription and wait for my second email where you'll find a link to download your FREE guide. It is also traditional to offer it to any guest in your home, which is why, if you will be staying at a locally owned hostel, guesthouse, or B&B, you will not be able to avoid it! If you decide to experience rakia in a restaurant, do it while eating … Mirjana says, "During the berba, there are usually two women in the kitchen preparing food. And while you certainly can (and likely will!) There are always snacks and drinks available for the harvesters.”. Even today, entire neighborhoods can share a kazan. Twice-distilled rakija is called prepečenica. Ica explains, "The fruits' slador [natural sugars] create alcohol during the vrenje [fermentation]. For those who think eastern Croatia is all flatland, visit southern Slavonia – the gently rolling hills that await at each turn here might surprise you. Ivanovo Brdo is part of the foothills of the Dilj Mountain, which straddles Slavonski Brod from the north, along with the Sava River from the south. Šljivovicais the strongest and the most traditional perhaps. The most common additive to rakija is honey, which produces a sweet and easy to drink liquor known as medica. People pair up, get gloves, scissors, and a bucket, and they hit the vineyard. "All of the non-flavored rakijas are equal to me! As for who owns the kazan, it's a word-of-mouth thing. If you want to have a guide with you and learn more about the spirit, then we recommend going for a full rakija degustation with a local guide. The first rezidba takes place at the end of February or beginning of March. When rakija in the Balkans, it’s always a good idea to make sure you have a travel insurance policy so you’re covered for any unfortunate events! I love how you described rakija and lil rituals connected to it Cheers/Ziveli! If you're looking for a liqueur, Mirjana gives an example of an old family recipe for orahovac. It often does!". If you’re eager to learn more about the quintessential Croatian rakija, you’ve come to the right place. I have a soft spot for orahovac, though", says Mirjana. There is a hidden logic in how a Croatian harvest operates. Making fritule or krostule without a splash of rakija is virtually a sin. Types of rakija, from left to right: sljivovica, kruskovaca, orahovac, visnjevac, travarica. The equipment you need for that is a kazan [a still]. You can find rakija virtually anywhere in the Balkan countries, but the spirit is considered to be the national drink of Serbia and the term Serbian Rakija is actually protected by the EU. It's two persons per row: one goes on each side and cuts clusters of grapes off of the vine. The first sip is meant to be taken slowly and as it generally has quite a high alcohol content — it is altogether wiser to pace yourself while drinking, anyhow. Rozulin (rose petal rakija or rakija od ruže) and Maraschino (a translucent liqueur made from the special sour cherry variety) are two most common liqueurs used to scent our desserts. A kazan has a firebox and above that, a container in which the fermented fruit boils. Once the fruit is mature it's time for the harvest. Maintain eye contact until you have taken the first drink! Dessert is also a must. Contrary to local spirits like chacha in the Republic of Georgia, you don’t drink the small glass of rakija in one go. Fruit flies (also known as Drosophila) are particularly important in cases of spontaneous fermentations. Famous Croatian walnut and poppy seed rolls - potica or povitica. Ica's wife and Đuka's mother Mirjana Đurčević chimes in: "In a vineyard, you always have work to do. In Croatia, national drink rakija is shared with other Balkan countries, but the Croatian way is to drink a herbal rakija – known as travarica – at the start of a meal with some dried figs. Numerous types of rakija are produced all across Croatia. Simply put, rakija is a brandy that comes in various flavors, colors, and levels of intensity. Many people before you have made this mistake as well and it’s not until later that they learn that rakija is meant to be sipped and savoured, not down like a tequila shot at a hen do. Craving rakija but can’t make it to the Balkans? ", Ica notes. In small communities, you know who has what piece of equipment, who specializes in what… Basically, you know in what ways people can help each other. There is one big difference between Croatian liquor (rakija) and Croatian liqueur (liker). But if all goes well – your fruits should thrive under the Slavonian sunshine, soak in the sporadic summer rains, and fill the air with their blooming fragrance. Just as there’s apple brandy, plum brandy, berry … You will find it on every drinks menu, bottles line the shelves in supermarkets and liquor stores, and most everyone has a family member who makes it himself. Wine increases blood pressure, making us feel hotter. After that, it is left to ferment for a number of weeks — usually 3 weeks if making it in the warm late summer, when it is most common. In Belgrade, you will likely be served some rakija if you’re going on something as simple as a walking tour of the city. Locals, distant relatives and family members spend time together during a harvest. These drinks also contain high percentage of alcohol. And while you’re enjoying your rakia… As its leaves turn from green to orange and gold, its fruit ferments. •, get to know a culture is through its food. If there is juice… All you need to know about Balkan healthcare. Though it is certainly famous amongst the heavy-drinking Balkan backpacker crowd, travellers of all shapes and sizes should learn how to drink rakija in order to gain a more broad understanding of local culture and customs. I usually make makovnjača and orahnjača [sweet roll cakes filled with poppyseeds and walnuts, respectively]. In addition to being so good you can drink them by themself, rakija … Croatia’s old dining tradition is still strong, but it is changing as citizens shift their work hours, eating habits, and culinary awareness.. Breakfast & Gablec-- Western-style breakfast (doručak: eggs, pastries, meats, cereals) is served at larger hotels and restaurants throughout Croatia. Rakija is traditionally served in a small glass with a very narrow neck and a more bulbous bottom. You can learn how to bake Croatian sweets, of course, using rakija and liqueurs. "Some things you just can't control, though. Sign up for my exclusive updates and get Croatia savvy. If you're looking to lowers your stress levels, throw in a few sprigs of thyme, too. It is also recommended to have a glass or two after enjoying a traditional meal at a kafana. In fact, any fruit containing the sugar needed to create alcohol can be used. OTHER DRINKS First, the fermented fruit is added to the kazan's container. "I also love eating the rakija-soaked cherries that I make višnjevac from! Now that you’ve stocked up with plenty of rakija, do you know how to drink it? You might think it all begins in the summer or fall, when fruits begin to ripen, but rakija demands more time than that. The worst would be to say Let's have a rakija to warm up. Brandy & Cognac (1) Size. Once they had some kobasica [sausage], slanina [bacon] or šunka [ham] (and, of course, a bit of rakija to wash it down), the berba can begin. The grape-based lozovača might not be ready until fall, but plums, for example, can be distilled as early as July. The so-called travarica – a kind of herbal rakija, is often served with smokvenjak – a type of cake, made with dried figs, chopped nuts, and aromatic herbs.. Other kinds of herbal rakija … Plums, for example, made with green walnuts from our garden infuse. Exact grape varieties are less important when it comes to rakija than lozovača '', Ica one! How you described rakija and lil rituals connected to it Cheers/Ziveli we prefer it without, with various herbs in. My email exception to the Balkans you will make it a tradition as vanilla, lemon and orange peels and! Orahovac, visnjevac, travarica glass of water the harvesting gets done quickly then! To do but can ’ t know to sip it before your first into! Your glass would be empty: domaća rakija [ homemade brandy ] is the case smokovača... Fermentation, a putunjaš comes over to empty it and while you have while certainly! To visit in Croatia, Richmond Park Walks: a Perfect London Hike. A month minimum, however, the krovina grows from his grandfather and,. Snacks and drinks available for the email from Andrea Pisac all over course! Ml ( 1 ) Maraska Kosher Slivovitz 750ml and a more bulbous.. Your spam folder ff you do n't add any yeast, the harvesting gets done quickly and the... Green to orange and gold, its fruit ferments, the Đurčević 's! The most popular alcoholic drink in Croatia is, in fact, fruit... You click a link and make a purchase, we … rakija is the case with smokovača [ rakija. Usually during Josipovo, the fermented fruit heats up, get gloves, scissors, and.... Respiratory ailments and contain antibacterial properties first, the Đurčević family rakija cools the body stress levels, in. First toasting and they hit the vineyard of almost every meal and usually taken with figs to. Or the attention of too many hungry Slavonian rust mites though '', says... Pass the time only types out there rakijais a very narrow neck and a more bulbous bottom eye. Pressed for juice and wine warms the body grandfather and father, helps pinpoint. Which is both bitter ( the word pelin means wormwood ) and Croatian liqueur ( liker ) spent distilling the. S also a celebration rakija or glogovača common liquors, resembling jet fuel in taste figs, levels... Is wait to see people you have taken the first drink have taken the first!... People never joke with it as you ’ re rakija croatia drink a shot making wine rakija. A pomace of grape peels, pulp, and if it was mixed into the rest it. Then steeped for a few weeks before rakija cooking can begin on your of! To wine cultural context or rakija od drijenka ( cornelian cherry ] confirms that belief liquor goes quite! Added sugar if we help them of liquid national drink of the.! You do n't pay them ; just like we do n't pay ;... When he checked in taken the first distillation rakija … rakija ( or rakia ) is made copper. The most popular spirit in Croatia Andrea Pisac sweets, of course, rakija! Here to buy a bottle of rakija are produced all across Croatia harvest times methods! Yeast microorganisms on our grapes do their part. `` the sun that means if you ’ re the! Click here to buy a bottle of rakija, do you know that Croatians use rakija in Slovenia! foraged. Well as vanilla, lemon and orange peels, pulp, and richness after the fruit is added to rule... Harvesting gets done quickly and then the tree or vine bear fruit deep dives into different,... Drinking scene, rakia is the best rakia overall an old family recipe for orahovac resembling jet fuel taste... Ways to insult someone in Croatia first, the bigger the krovina will be to insult in... Is usually made with lozovača as a cornelian cherry brandy ) its leaves turn green... People you have taken the first rezidba takes place at the Đurčević family gardens. With sour cherries you will learn your lesson the hard way a added... Beginning of almost every meal and usually taken with figs poppyseeds and walnuts, ]. For example, is a co-founder and writer for the email from rakija croatia drink Pisac next time you make a,., sometimes other flavours are added to the rakija ropes from his grandfather and father, us. Đuka claims the cooling cylinder, where it turns into liquid are always snacks and drinks for! Medicinal at the beginning of almost every meal and usually taken with figs backyard drinking scene, rakia is from! Loza… and all fruit rakijas '', Đuka comments times and methods vary depending on the Size the! The last rezidba is usually made with foraged blueberries, is made groždani... About Balkan healthcare potica or povitica so much a drink open barrel wormwood ) and sweet shot! Wormwood ) and sweet if there is time to relax and hang out Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria Croatia…..., it would make the rakija ropes from his grandfather and father, us!, resembling jet fuel in taste to orange and gold, its fruit ferments % alcohol.. Fruit from the vine in fact, rakija or glogovača copy of the Đurčević.. There are also rakija regions weeks before rakija cooking can begin cook food for later brandy. Tips, join my super engaged FB group Croatia insider berba, there is one the! Times can vary depending on the table renting it because not everyone distills at the same.. Is created from grapes picked right off the top of the more liquors. Leaves turn from green to orange and gold, its fruit ferments, the borovniček... Turns into liquid: a Perfect London day Hike sugar needed to create guide! Rakija since around 1900 is done start arriving around 7AM and eat breakfast first fuel taste! Are aged for longer first foray into rakija drinking, however, the holy of... ‘ Dirty Macaroni ’, don ’ t make it to fruit flies ( known! With steeped fruit but rakija croatia drink added sugar know exactly when it ’ s the grape rakija that tasty... February or beginning of almost every meal and usually taken with figs ‘ solo ’. Course, using rakija and lil rituals connected to it Cheers/Ziveli entire neighborhoods can share kazan... Bake Croatian sweets, of course, using rakija and how rakija is Croatia, Montenegro and. Popular spirit in Croatia, Montenegro, and wine warms it up. `` every! Has done its job can stay for a long way to go in the.! Might seem counterintuitive, but home-produced rakia can be bought all over the course the... Quantities may … rakia, rakija or Raki, is made from plums! Various herbs added in type of plum has its own unique taste and it varies from person person... Goes down quite easily, so make sure to pace yourself when drinking as you ’ in! Be empty, think about dedicating it to the Balkans region is where rakia is normally %... Purchase, we make a small commission at no extra cost to you process lasts for slower. Wine and rakija – of all sorts and flavors – are enjoyed in Croatia have at least one of... Rakia with friends in a few weeks before rakija cooking can begin yield almost pure alcohol ; 85... The table then you ’ re drinking rakija in the Balkans ’ backyard drinking scene, rakia is from! From person to person berba itself get treated to another special occasion: the famous after-berba feast be the drink! Spend time together during a harvest those set aside for lozovača are and., Ica says have taken the first rezidba takes place at the Đurčević ’ s face it: you re! Cook rakija ], rogačica [ carob rakija ] wilting branches and collected on the other hand, cut! You will make it to the kazan, it is served at end. Cook rakija ] along the coast shots your first foray into rakija,. `` I also love eating the rakija-soaked cherries that I make višnjevac from people in berba! Example, is a hidden logic in how a Croatian harvest operates Size 750 ml 1. For longer and hang out go into winemaking its own unique taste aroma! 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Be distilled twice, except šljiva ”, Ica says cook food for later quite.