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12/13/2016
Weird and Wonderful National Drinks
Weird and Wonderful National Drinks

For many people, one of the main reasons for visiting foreign countries is to try the local food and drink. For those brave enough, trying unfamiliar native dishes can mean unique flavour combinations and strange aftertastes. However, no overseas trip is fully complete without treating the taste buds to something different.

We all know that Guinness comes from Ireland and sangria from Spain, but you will be amazed at the range of other national drinks of the world.

The weird
It’s universally known that Canada and the United States are in love with maple syrup but we didn’t know the true extent of this affair! Established in 2010, Florida-based brewery Funky Buddha have created several bizarre brews on the curious drinking community but their Maple Bacon Coffee Porter is especially notorious. Almost like brunch in a glass, this creamy, sweet brew is loved more widely than you might think, winning gold for a specialty beer at the World Beer Cup in 2016.

In Seattle, Black Rock Spirits’ worst-kept secret is their Bakon Vodka brand. Now shipped to countries across Europe and Asia too, turn the day upside-down with this breakfast favourite that's best enjoyed at twilight.

The wonderful
While the United States is the peculiar brewing capital of the world, the Abashari Brewery in Japan takes the theme to a whole new level. The Hokkaido-based facilities’ most fascinating export is their Rainbow Beer, designed to represent all four seasons experienced on the island. The turquoise-coloured Ryuhyo Draft, for instance, symbolises winter, fusing together melted ice water with a local seaweed extract.

Another island, Iceland, has created a sea-influenced classic, Brennivín. The perfect companion to hákarl (shark meat), this potato-based schnapps has been named ‘The Black Death’ and has a liquorice-like taste.

The extreme

Airag Drink

Then there are the beverages which just seem plain wrong. Rana y maca, otherwise known as Peruvian frog juice, is a mix of blended frog alongside aloe vera and honey to form a drink of a milkshake like consistency.

The animal theme continues in Central Asian nations such as Kyrgyzstan where kumis (fermented horse milk) is common on supermarket shelves. Giving multiple health benefits for those who dare to sample this sour, frothy brew, famous fans of kumis include Attila the Hun and Genghis Khan.

When it comes to unusual garnishes, most will be familiar with cocktails complete with a worm, but how about a snake in your sauvignon? Well, nearly! In Vietnam and other East Asian countries, snake wine is enjoyed by those in search of better health and reinvigoration. Typically infused into rice wine, the snakes – even venomous ones – have long been claimed safe to drink. This crazy tipple is usually enjoyed as a shot and was first consumed during China’s Western Zhou dynasty in 771 BC.

If you’d like to find out about the many taste experiences possible within the Kempinski Hotel portfolio, contact us for more information today.

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