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Punsch is a traditional liqueur in Sweden and it has a long history. It begins with a spirit known as Arrack, a rum-like spirit from South East Asia that was imported by the Swedish East India Company around 1733. The spirit was infused with sugar, citrus and spices to make a delicious liqueur that could be enjoyed straight or mixed into cocktails. Generally known as punsch, Kronan Swedish Punsch is one brand that is easily available in the US. When we say “easily,” we meant that you can easily buy it online and have it shopped to you (depending on state regs.) because they only carry this at very well-stocked liqueur stores, as it’s not particularly well-known. You’ll find punsch called for in many tiki drinks and quite a few Prohibition-era cocktails.
This liqueur is very complex. It has intense aromas of allspice, clove, licorice, caramel and dried oranges that just flow out of the bottle as soon as you open it. When you take a sip, you’ll taste molasses, allspice, cloves, brown sugar, rum, oak, vanilla and leather. That may sound like a lot of flavors to taste at once, but they all flow together with incredible smoothness. The finish is long and spicy, leaving you with great burnt sugar and vanilla notes, as though you had just eaten the topping off a creme brulee. It is exceptionally smooth and rich enough that you’ll want another sip as soon as you finish the first one. You can drink this on its own, with ice or add it to a variety of cocktails, both hot and cold. It is dessert-like, but there is enough spice that it can be paired with many different flavors.
It is difficult for us to rate this liqueur because, to be honest, we haven’t had much punsch in the past and that makes direct comparisons difficult. What we can tell you is that this is an excellent liqueur that is clearly very well made. It smells and tastes fantastic. In light of this, we’re going to recommend that if you see a bottle while you’re out shopping, you should probably take it home with you.
Liqueur Rating: 5/5
Liqueur Rating Scale:
0/5 – What is this?
1/5 – Bad. Not worth buying and not worth drinking
2/5 – Not very good, but ok in a pinch.
3/5 – Good and gets the job done.
4/5 – Very tasty liqueur, with complex flavors that is very good on its own or in cocktails.
5/5 – Absolutely delicious, high quality liqueur.