Schnaps & Co. A definition of terms – Goose liquor

Schnaps – what is schnapps?

I ask myself this every time someone speaks of "schnapps" – because there are actually fires, spirits, liqueurs, etc. – so terms that are clearly narrower, and the respective product divided into categories. Schnapps is quite looser in the confinement, according to Duden schnapps is a "high-percentage alcoholic drink, especially brandy; Clearer, "the hard stuff. But what is the difference between fire and spirit – and distillate and spirit?


A distillate can be both: fire or spirit, it is always the result of a distillation.
"Spirits" is the umbrella term for all stronger, alcoholic drinks such as brandies, spirits and liqueurs.


Brand or brandy and spirit are two terms that are used depending on their manufacturing process. We speak of a fire, for example: a fruit brandy whose fresh fruit was mashed. When fruit mashes ferment, quite a lot happens, e.g. that sugar turns into alcohol. When the fermentation is complete, ie the complete sugar in the fruit mash has turned to alcohol, the mash can be distilled: the alcohol boils at 78 ° C and condenses again, creating a fruit brandy. The alcohol contained is therefore made from the fruit's own sugar of the fruit used.


Ghost is a little different: Geist uses ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin, which serves as the sole alcohol base. This neutral alcohol (neutral because it has no sensory intrinsic taste) is flavored. It can be: Fresh fruits, such as raspberries, oranges or sloes or herbs, such as Enzyian, mint, rosemary or thyme. The spirit production has a huge advantage: the flavors of natural products, which have an excellent flavor, but no or only small amounts of sugar, can still be preserved in alcohol!

Whether one may call the final product "XY-spirit" is another question. The EU regulation has also created a clear set of rules here. Take as an example my coffee-orange-spirit. This drink is actually, in terms of its manufacturing process, a spirit. Now, however, long ago, fruits and herbs were defined, which may be made into a "spirit". On this list, however, there is no "coffee-orange-spirit" – which is why, legally speaking, it has to be called a coffee-orange-spirit.

For whatever reasons the term "spirit drink" has to be used for common fires or spirits, I explain in another article.

And what is actually a gin, I explain to you here: What is gin?


What is ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin?

Ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin can be obtained by distilling fermented fruits – for this one likes to fall back on potatoes or cereals. Ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin has a minimum alcoholic strength by volume of 96% vol. (Maximum 96.6% vol. Are possible). In addition, ethyl alcohol has no foreign taste, so it is sensory neutral.
Of course, ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin has maximum levels with respect to minor constituents, e.g. Methanol (30 g / hl of pure alcohol), however, a list of all these limits would go beyond the scope.