Unusual Drinks (Part 3)

Some of the many, many bottles. Source: AlcoholReviews.com.

Some weeks back I made a decision: I would buy no new bottles of liquor for as long as possible. My reason was not anxiety about my weight or a sudden conversion to teetotalism. No, I had simply grown tired of looking at the dozens upon dozens of bottles lining the counter and cupboards of my man cave. Nearly all of which had arrived as samples sent by drinks companies and their public relations firms.

I had intended to clear them out by throwing a free booze party for friends: show up with a bag backpack, taste anything you want, and walk out. I did this once about 15 years ago in Brooklyn, and I’ll never forget hearing the clanking of bottles departing my railroad apartment and into the Brooklyn night. And what fun we had.

That  was in my younger freer days, and now busy-ness kept me from arranging a sequel saturnalia. Might I pour them down the drain? That would be the most efficient solution. Dumping the product of nature and man, however, felt like vandalism—a sin of sorts.

What to do? A passage from Fyodor Dostoevski’s The Insulted and Injured (1861) recurred to me. “We shall have to work out our future happiness somehow by suffering; pay for it somehow by fresh miseries. Everything is purified by suffering.” Continue reading “Unusual Drinks (Part 3)”


Schnapps- wow, that brings back hazy memories of ill-spent youth. Fuzzy navels- the head snaps side to side at the mere thought. BERENTZEN APFEL KORN is a mere 40 proof, making it, in our view, a real schnapps. How now? Well, the point of schnapps, as we see it, isn’t to disguise raw spirit in gooey fruit flavors, which folks then shoot down their gullets one after another. Rather, schnapps is to be taken in a small serving after a meal; it’s a dessert drink. BERENTZEN offers a sour apple note, then slips down your throat with nary a burn. Simple, elegant. (Rating ****1/4)

To see if our retailer carries BERENTZEN, click SHOP and type “BERENTZEN” in the search engine and click the magnifying glass. Alternatively, you may surf to http://www.Berentzen.de/ and practice your German translation skills.