Krupnik

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For other uses, see Krupnik (disambiguation).
Krupnik
Krupnik.jpg
Polish krupnik
Type Nalewka
Manufacturer Various
Country of origin Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth
Introduced 16th century or earlier
Alcohol by volume 38% and higher (commercial versions)
Proof (US) 80–100 (commercial versions)
Related products List of vodkas

Krupnik (Polish), Krupnik (Belarusian) or Krupnikas (Lithuanian), is a traditional sweet alcoholic drink similar to a liqueur, based on grain spirit (usually vodka) and honey, popular in Poland and Lithuania. In Poland it is grouped in the nalewka category of alcoholic beverages. Mass-produced versions of krupnik consist of 40–50% (80–100 proof) alcohol, but traditional versions will use 80–100% grain alcohol as the base. Honey, in particular clover honey, is the main ingredient used to add sweetness, as well as up to 50 different herbs. There are many versions and some recipes have been passed down through generations. Krupnik originated in the territories of present-day Belarus, which were at the time part of the larger Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Krupnik is sometimes heated before being served.

It is a distant relative of the medovukha (Russian) or miodówka (Polish), a honey-made spirit popular in all Slavic countries.

Legend has it that the recipe was created by the Benedictine monks at a monastery in Niaśviž (then known as Nieśwież) which was founded by Mikołaj Krzysztof "Sierotka" Radziwiłł. Known in Poland and Lithuania (including present-day Belarus) at least since the 16th century, it soon became popular among the szlachta of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. There are numerous recipes preserved up to present times in countless diaries of the szlachta. Krupnik was also used as a common medicinal disinfectant by Polish soldiers in World War II.

At times, spicy seasonings and herbs are added for flavour. The brand of the honey and the ratio of seasonings are key factors which determine the final taste of krupnik. It may be served hot, at room temperature or chilled. A specific sort of krupnik which contains more herbs and less honey is brewed by Karaims.

"Krupnik" is also the brand name of a range of alcoholic beverages produced by the Belvédère company, including krupnik, vodka, and various nalewki. In 2014, Krupnik vodka was the eighth most popular vodka brand in the world by sales volume.[1]

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