Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Ten of schnapps and one of whisky

Eve and Stefanie Klöckner (in white shirt)
For those who thought that I was 'slowing down' by having just a hot chocolate in Hachenburg, here's the truth. I had an eventful night at Birkenhof Brennerei sampling their fine selection of fruit brandies and schnapps.

Owner Stefanie Klöckner generously donated her expertise and products so I could sample this genuine taste of Germany. Schnapps is distilled from fermented fruit, usually with no added sugar. It might look harmless as it is clear and almost colourless, but it packs a powerful punch at 40% ABV (alcohol by volume) (80 proof).

TH and I swirled our glasses and sniffed and quaffed our way through 10 glasses of their wide range. I was very taken with three in particular - hazelnut, plum and the Williams pear.

My top favourite was Fictenfeuer - best described as a citrusy, fruity, taste explosion.

Stefanie discovered that I also have hankering for a good, single malt and offered a sample of their unique Fading Hill Whisky. While this was milder than the smoky single malts of Islay that I am rather partial to, it had a lot of promise. Birkenhof have sold out of their current stock of whisky and, judging by the available space in their temperature controlled barrel store, they are planning on a lot more bottles next year.

If you are in Hachenburg (in the Westerwald of Germany) make sure you stop Birkenhof Brennerei.  Click here to find out more.

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