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Slivovitz or Slivovitsa (/ˈslɪvəvɪts/; Bulgarian: сливовица slivovitsa, Bosnian: šljivovica, pronounced [ʃʎîv̞ɔ̝v̞it͡sa] Czech: slivovice, German: Sliwowitz , Croatian: šljivovica, Hungarian: sligovica, Italian: slivovitz, Macedonian: сливова, Polish: śliwowica, Romanian: şliboviţă, Slovak: slivovica, Slovene: slivovka, Serbian: шљивовица šljivovica, Yiddish: שליוואָוויץ) is a distilled beverage made from Damson plums. It is frequently called plum brandy, and in the Balkans is part of the category of drinks called rakia.

Production and consumption

Slivovitz is primarily produced in Slavic regions of Central and Eastern Europe, both commercially as well as by many households on an informal, homemade basis. Primary producers are in Serbia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Bulgaria. It is most popularly consumed in those nations, as well as wherever communities of expatriate from these nations exist. Similar plum brandies are also produced in Germany, Switzerland, France, the United States, and Canada, but marketed under other names, such as brandy, Pflümli, or eau de vie.

Distilling process

In the manufacturing process, the plums and a liberal proportion of the ground kernels are first crushed and pressed, then starch and sugar may be added to the juice, and the mixture is allowed to ferment. Distillation gives the crude product, and clarifying processes complete the liqueur, but ageing is required to develop its finer qualities. Its flavour is due in part to the plum kernels, which contain a considerable percentage of amygdalin, the characteristic component of bitter almonds.

Some producers have obtained a Hechsher for their slivovitz, certifying that it is kosher.

Imitation slivovitz is made by flavouring spirits with prune juice and artificial oil of bitter almonds.

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Slivovitz (plum brandy) production,

Sliwowica Plum Brandy,

How to Make Slivovitz,