Hungary's unofficial national drink, a bitter aperitif
flavored with herbs. Originally devised in 1790 by a Dr. Zwack
, court physician to the Imperial Court of Austria-Hungary
, the liquor
got its name when Emperor Joseph II
tasted it and exclaimed:
Das ist ein Unikum!
...which means "This is unique!". You will instantly
appreciate the multiple meanings
inherent in this phrase when trying the stuff, which is often politely described as
"an acquired taste
These days Zwack is Hungary's largest liquor
producer and rows of beautiful black bottles of Unicum
with the trademark white cross in a red circle can be
spotted in any store frequented by tourists.
Hungarians, for most part, prefer to shake their
head and go back to drinking Hungary's excellent
wines or tippling some less unique pálinka.