About Romanian Spirits

The leading sprits in Romania are fruit brandies; the most famous are made from plums, while others are made from different fruits or grain. These are clear with alcohols ranging from 28-60%. The most famous fruit brandy in the country is a plum brandy known as Tuica; while there are numerous home made versions that are a bit rough, the best examples are double distilled and have more aromatics, as well as being much smoother. Served at weddings and other celebratory affairs, it is served before meals and sipped cold.

Palinca is another Romanian spirit that is somewhat similar; these are blends of several fruits (raspberries, cherries). These are served in the same manner as Tuica. There is also a small quantity of herbal liqueurs and congnac-style brandies, made from grape skins.
Top Picks for Romania
Original Vodka
Clear color. Clean, floral, minerally aromas of fresh lavender, lichen, rock, and vanilla wafer cookie with a supple, crisp, dry light-to-medium body and a warming, charming, medium-long mountain stream, whipped potato, yam, and dill finish. Lovely and pure vodka for vodka connoisseurs.
95 points $10 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Silver Vodka
Clear color. Clean, minerally aromas of marble and wet clay with a velvety, crisp, dry medium body and a peppery, medium-long wet stone, crushed velvet, fondant, and pink peppercorn finish. A very successful vodka, serious and skillfully composed.
94 points $12 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Blue Vodka
Clear color. Minerally aromas of yeasty dough, deodorant, and freshly cut grass with a creamy, bright, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, delightful, medium-length condensed milk, nutmeg, egg yolk, and wax candy finish. A delightfully custardy vodka for weighty cocktails or sipping on the rocks.
90 points $13 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
London Dry Gin
Clear color. Fresh, citrusy aromas and flavors of fresh crushed juniper, jasmine and heather, fresh lemon peel, and black pepper with a velvety, crisp, dryish light body and a warming, medium-length hibiscus, banana peel, and eucalyptus and mint finish. A classic dry gin with floral components that don’t teeter into perfume-y territory.
85 points $11.50
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab