Drinking in Ukraine: warm and cozy national drinks for the fall

Get your favorite shoes out! Autumn is here and it`s a great time for long walks and nice discoveries. And if it`ll get chilly, warm up with delicious national drinks. Sweet, spicy, hot... and even burning! In this article we`ve collected the best autumn drinks from all over Ukraine!

Coffee with salt (Drohobych)

Salt is a symbol of Drohobych, and it`s not only on the city`s coat of arms, but also in its favorite drink. This is where you need to try traditional coffee with a pinch of salt. Salt makes the drink softer, reveals hidden shades of taste that tickle your taste buds. As in life itself, you get more aware of goodness and sweetness after you`ve had some salt. Plus, the person who taught Europe how to drink coffee - Yuri Kulchitsky - was born nearby. You can have a cup of coffee in Kavun (2 Zhupnaya St., Drohobych), where local coffee lovers gather - and try a cake with salt too.

Lavender Cocoa (Kyiv)

Cocoa is a drink when there is no mood for energetic coffee or philosophical tea. It is made of childhood memories, pixie dust and tenderness. What magic makes the chocolate powder a little mauve when it warms up in the pot, and velvet on the tongue? We couldn`t possibly say. And lavender brings yet another level to it. Take a walk around Podol and go for a cup of lavender cocoa in Call me Cacao! (35 Nizhny Val St., Kyiv).

Flaming Coffee (Lviv)

We don`t know what`s up with people in Lviv, but for some reason they like to set coffee on fire. Look for the small courtyard near the Market Square (Ploscha Rynok), where the coffee shop Under the blue flask is hiding (4, Russkaya St., Lviv). The pyromaniacs here set everything on fire - from canapes to ice cream. But a small fire show is great to warm you up when the days get colder and the nights darker.

Coffee from the Polizeimeister (Kamyanets-Podilskyi)

In Kamianets you can have a cup of coffee AND go a little back in time. The venue called Coffee from the Polizeimeister (8 Starobulvarnaya St., Kamyanets-Podslskyi) is filled to the brim with antiquities. Try signature coffee with spice and imagine yourself in past centuries. Oh, the photos you can make!

Fireweed tea (Carpathian Mountains)

Lilac flowers that cover the mountain plaines and gain healing Carpathian strength - one of the most beloved herbs of our ancestors. The fermented fireweed with no additives is most valued, it has a noble taste, like exquisite oriental teas. You can try it in lot of places in the Carpathian Mountains. But the best way to drink it is on the top of Mount Gemba, in the Surya tea house (Pylypets village, Transcarpathian region), admiring the landscapes that change every minute. You can get there by foot or on a cable car.

Krambambula (Chernihiv Region)

Krambambula is a drink borrowed from our Belarusian neighbors, the history of which dates back to the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Funny name came from German: there was once a popular juniper-flavored liquor. Gradually, people began to call any alcoholic tinctures Krambambuli, until the name stuck to this one, which is made from vodka with honey and spice. To warm up with real krambambula you can travel to Mizhrichynskyi Regional Landscape Park (Otrokhi village, Chernihiv region).

Carpathian Gin (Ivano-Frankivsk Region)

English gin gets its taste from juniper berries. Carpathian gin is also flavored with juniper, or sometimes with spruce buds. It is like a bottled memories of cool morning in the forest, with the smell of fresh tar and wild berries. Carpathian gin is becoming more and more popular, it can be found not only in the mountains, but in Kyiv too. But if you visit Frankivsk, look for it in the popular Desyatka Bar (4 Shashkevich St., Ivano-Frankivsk).

Varenukha (Everywhere the Cossacs are)

Ukrainian varenukha is a distant relative of mulled wine, which everyone loves to drink when it gets cold. Varenukha is made of dried fruits, spices and honey with vodka. Everything is thrown in the big pot, covered with dough and put in the oven to languish. When the pot is removed and the baked crust is cracked, a thick sweet "drink" looks more like a soup. You can try varenukha in Kosa nad charkoy tavern in Mamaeva Sloboda (2 Mykhailo Donets St., Kyiv).

Hrenovukha (Zhytomyr Region)

Horseradish roots are harvested in August-September, when have the best taste and strength. Therefore, it's time to try the strong and burning horseradish moonshine - hrenovukha. This drink warms you up from the inside out. You can try hrenovukha in Woodland hut (Gorodske village, Zhytomyr region), and it is better to drink it with borsch and kulesh.

Pomydorovka (Ternopil)

Botanical science claims that tomato is a berry, therefore, pomydorovka is a berry liqueur:) This alcoholic beverage is made from tomato juice, peppers and other spices. Bloody Mary? Never heard of. In some places, ketchup is also called "pomydorovka", so don`t get them сonfused. You can try alcoholic pomydorovka in one of the best restaurants in Ternopil region - Staryi Mlin or Old Mill (1a Brodovskaya St., Ternopil).

Blueberry wine (Transcarpathian Region)

Finally, we will pay tribute to the summer and order blueberry wine, dark, sweet and soulful. People in Carpathians call it yaffin wine, which sounds more exotic. This is a drink you take in with small sips, savouring every note. There is a delicious blueberry wine in Bograch (10/12 Miru Square, Mukachevo). 

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