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Kräuterlikör [ˈkʀɔɪtɐlikøːɐ] (herbal liqueur or spiced liqueur, also called "half-bitters") is a type of liqueur that is flavored with herbs or spices and traditionally drunk neat as a digestif. In contrast to bitters, they have a higher sugar content, expressed as invert sugar. Liqueurs of this kind normally contain 15% to 44% alcohol by volume.
The history of Kräuterlikör recipes dates back to medieval authors like Hildegard of Bingen. Mixtures of alcohol and bitter substances were used as medicine to increase bile and gastric acid secretion; however, the higher proportion of alcohol and sugar is not conducive to digestion. Nowadays, Kräuterlikör is also served as an ingredient of different cocktails and long drinks.
Widely sold liqueur brands are Riga Black Balsam, Jägermeister, Killepitsch, Kuemmerling, Schierker Feuerstein, Schwartzhog, Wurzelpeter, and Underberg (Germany), Altvater (Austria), Becherovka (Czech Republic), Unicum (Hungary), as well as Bénédictine and Chartreuse (France). In Italy, amaro ("bitter") liqueurs include Cynar and Ramazzotti.
- "Annex II". REGULATION (EC) No 110/2008 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 15 January 2008 on the definition, description, presentation, labelling and the protection of geographical indications of spirit drinks and repealing Council Regulation (EEC) No 1576/89. europa.eu. 13 February 2008. p. 29. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
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