Alcohol in Poland

Craft revolution

Most people think that everyone’s favourite alcohol in Poland is vodka and this may have been true a decade ago; however today, Poles have access to a much wider choice of alcoholic beverages and local beer seems to have much more appeal to many Poles.

Craft beer & real ale is increasingly popular. In the cities and towns, you will find specialist bars providing a staggering range of brews & flavours and in the past few years, hundreds of small breweries have opened in Poland to cater for this craft revolution.

Alcohol in Poland is not limited to vodka and beer. You’re find a surprising variety of drinks around the country including some hidden gems such as Deptucha, a Baileys type drink made from goat milk, Starka which is an aged vodka sometimes referred to as Polish whiskey and Goldwasser, one of the oldest liqueurs in the world containing 20 roots and herbs with 22 carat gold flakes floating in it.

Out in the villages, you’re still find locals drinking bimber; which is just another word for moonshine. In the Podlasie region in eastern Poland, the moonshine is known as Duch Puszczy and can be 150% proof. Nowadays, bimber is still produced illicitly; however some small producers have registered their brands and moonshine can be purchased legally in some regions of Poland.

You probably tried some beers in your life. Classics like lagers or wheat beers are great, but there is so much more to be discovered! Ever wondered how it is actually made? What the main ingredients are? How to recognize them easily? On this 2-hour tour, an experienced guide will take you to three different places and give you an inside into the polish world of beer.

Favourite tipples

Prices for alcohol in Poland tend to be much cheaper than in the UK with a pint of strong lager costing around £2 in most bars (even in the major cities). On the downside, alcoholism is common. In the past few years, there has been an increase in the consumption of spirits in Poland which is partly driven by the sales of small bottles of vodka, known colloquially as małpki (monkeys).

Although wine consumption in Poland is not yet as culturally entrenched as the consumption of beer or spirits, major changes are being seen in the drinking habits of many Polish consumers. Underpinning this is the development of a strong and sustainable wine appreciation culture.

If you’re going to drink alcohol in Poland, there are a few tipples that are definitely worth trying. Here’s a few of our favourites:

Krupnik – a sweet vodka made with honey and herbs and a favourite with the ladies because it is easy to drink.

Miód Pitny (drinkable honey) – this is basically mead distilled from honey and was the traditional drink in Poland prior to the arrival of beer in the country.

Żołądkowa Gorzka – an amber coloured vodka flavoured with herbs and spices with a sweet spicy taste.

Żubrówka – flavoured with a type of grass from the Białowieża Forest (you will find one blade of this grass in each bottle), Żubrówka has a almond / vanilla / floral taste and a fragrance of mown hay. It is usually mixed with apple juice.

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