Mexico has tequila, Italy has grappa…Hungary’s nectar of the Gods is Palinka.
A traditional fruit brandy, it dates back as far as the fourteenth century and is made from plums, apricots, apples, pears, peaches, or cherries (or as a Hungarian saying goes, anything that jelly can be made from). Created via a double distillation process, the alcohol content can be as high as 86%.
Hell, this stuff is so powerful, it even has its own patron saint, Saint Nicholas. A traditional Hungarian greeting is “Pálinkás jó reggelt!” which means “Good morning with pálinka!”
While I didn’t hear that greeting, I felt it! On a couple of occasions I had the pleasure of partaking – all in the name of research, right?! Pear, plum, and cherry, but at some point along the way, after two or three or four, can you really taste the difference?
Budapest is known for its nightlife and whether your weakness is wine, beer, or palinka, there’s plenty to offer!