Slivovice is an alcoholic beverage of fermented prune juice with a strength of about 45. The drink is popular mainly among the Balkan countries’ peoples and refers to the class of brandy. Slivovitz is the national drink of Bulgaria, Serbia, Herzegovina, Bosnia, and Croatia. In these countries, there are no houses, which would not grow plum, and the drink is almost all for their own consumption. There are over 2000 different varieties of plums used to prepare the drink. Also, plum brandy is traditional for these countries of fallen prunes and plum jam.
For the first time, the drink appeared in the 16th century. Slivovice became popular among the local population, so they began to produce it widespread, and its use took on a mass character. One of the marks of Serbian plum brandy in 2007 won the award of the European Union’s certificate.
History of Slivovice
The production of plum brandy began in the 16th century in Serbia in villages. The local population liked the sweetish and multifaceted taste. The production became widespread.
When information about plum brandy reached the upper class, the nobles turned to the village ruler to ban production. Based on a petition, the emperor issued a law prohibiting production. However, this did not prevent its spread. The drink was so popular among the local population that already in the 18th century, it spread throughout the entire territory of modern Europe.
Slivovice spread throughout the Balkan countries. It also took root in Hungary, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. For Serbs, plum brandy becomes a national drink. On the territory of this country, 12% of the total world production is grown. Depending on the number of distillations, the drink’s strength varies from 40 to 75 volumes of alcohol. On average, the most widespread are drinks with a strength of 45–53% vol. Alc.
Aging plum brandy
The aging of Slivovice takes place in oak barrels for an average of 5 years. However, some varieties are aged from 2 to 20 years. When aged in oak barrels, plum brandy acquires a rich aroma of ripe plum, as well as a magnificent golden hue, saturated with notes of oak. If desired, in Serbia, you can visit many excursions and establishments that provide an opportunity to see the process of making an old drink.
For cooking Slivovitz, producers select the ripest fruits that carefully wash and place them in a masher. There is a plum with seeds subjected to pounding to form a slurry. The whole mass they pour into the barrel, add a small amount of water, and leave to fermentation until the termination of carbon dioxide allocation—the finished wort depends on the desired result, maybe a single or double distillation. And the strength can reach about 75. You can consume the drink immediately after distillation, but the drink’s true connoisseurs believe that the drink is best after aging in oak barrels for at least 5 years. After that, it acquires a light yellow color and a rich plum aroma.
Plum brandy is usually an aperitif, pure and simple. Mixing it with other drinks leads to the formation of an unpleasant metallic taste. When serving the beverage, the temperature does not matter. The plum brandy is good, both chilled and warmed to room temperature.
Benefits of Slivovice
Slivovitz is a universal drink that has many useful properties. Slivovice is good as an antiseptic for small wounds, bruises, and cuts, for colds, and as a basis for herbal infusions and compresses.
To relieve pain associated with arthritis, rheumatism, sciatica, and gout, you should make the infusion of the grated Adam’s root (250 g) and 200 ml of plum brandy. The mixture should stay calm for a few days.
When violations of heart rhythm, the tincture of walnut may be helpful, you should use the crushed inner part of the nut (500 g), fill it with plum brandy to fully cover the membranes. Leave the mixture in a dark place for 2 weeks. Ready infusion needs 30-40 drops once a day.
Benefits for skin
To cleanse the skin from oily sheen, prevent acne, and relieve skin irritation, you can prepare a lotion on the leaves of Hypericum. Dried herb (10 g) to fill a strong plum brandy (100 ml) and infuse for 7 days. Ready infusion (2 tbsp) before use, dilute in half a glass of warm water, moisten a cotton pad, and wipe the skin or applied to problem areas for 5-7 min. When strong manifestations of the rash, you should perform procedures daily until complete cleansing.
A good antiseptic and anti-inflammatory agent for oral mucosa you can make from marigold flowers with slivovice. Pour 100 ml of plum brandy. The infusion should be left for 5-6 days in a dark place and then used for rinsing. Be sure, before using, to dilute in water in a ratio of 1 tsp to a glass of water. When gingivitis, they must be pre-massaged with a soft toothbrush.
To soothe the nervous system in some unexplained anxiety attacks, anxiety, depression, you should take a tincture of flowers of Lily of the valley. Collected fresh flowers you should pour in a half-liter bottle to make two-thirds of the volume. Then pour the brandy and infuse for 15 days in a cool dark place. Take tincture in the volume of 10 drops diluted in 50 ml water 2-3 daily after food.
The dangers of Slivovitz and contraindications
Slivovice is alcoholic beverages, excessive and systematic use, leading to malfunction of the liver, kidneys, and stomach.
It is contraindicated for pregnant, lactating mothers, people in the management of vehicles and complex mechanisms, and children up to 18 years.
Not compatible with this drink and medication – it can enhance or depress their effect.
Useful and dangerous properties of other beverages: