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Juniper berries

Borovička (Slovak pronunciation: [ˈbɔɾɔʋitʃka]) (also known as Juniper brandy[according to whom?]) is a Slovak alcoholic beverage flavored with juniper berries.[1] It is characterized by a white[2] or golden colour[3] and a taste similar to that of dry gin.[4] It is popular especially in Slovakia[4] and Czech Republic. Today's commercially produced borovička contains about 40%[2] alcohol by volume or 80 Proof. As a benchmark, the minimum alcohol amount required by law in Slovakia is 35%.[5]

Borovička is a common traditional Slovak moonshine, and is flavoured by juniper berries or pine. Its flavor, although much stronger, resembles gin and can a reach 50–70% alcohol content.

Similar drinks but differently made are known in south Slavic countries such as brinjevec in Slovenia (brin means juniper in Slovene) and klekovača in Serbia (kleka means juniper in Serbian). Other similar drinks include several types of Gin like Jenever, etc. International Juniper Brandy Day is celebrated annually on 24th of June.[6]


According to The Dictionary of the Slovak Language, borovička derives its name from the Slovak word for juniper, borievka.[7] Borovička harks back to the 16th century, when this beverage was produced in the Habsburg Monarchy's county of Liptov, today part of central Slovakia. It was exported throughout the whole Habsburg Monarchy, particularly to Vienna and Budapest. It was transported southward principally via rafts floating down the river Váh.[8][9]

Major brands[edit]

References and footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ St. Nicolaus - trade, a.s
  2. ^ a b Archived 2007-06-30 at the Wayback Machine (Slovak)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2007-03-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ a b "Alcohol Beverages | Slovakia". Archived from the original on 2007-02-07. Retrieved 2007-03-04.
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-04-03. Retrieved 2007-03-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) (Slovak)
  6. ^ TRENDreštaurá "International Juniper Brandy Day". (in Slovak). Retrieved 2017-02-05.
  7. ^ Slovenské slovníky
  8. ^ (Slovak)
  9. ^ (Slovak)