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What Is Limet?

By A. Leverkuhn
Updated May 16, 2024
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Limet is a kind of Eastern European bitters drink. Bitters drinks are alcoholic drinks that are flavored with bitter herbs, and in general these alcoholic concoctions have been regarded as both medicines and forms of recreational drinks, but in modern times, bitters are often another option to be served in bars and restaurants, or anywhere that serves alcoholic beverages. Limet is a specific bitters drink from the Czech Republic.

As a specific kind of Eastern European bitters, limet is similar to other various drinks, such as fernet and becherovka. Some of these drinks are brand names, where others are simply names for traditional bitters. Many of them have some common ingredients, including items like cinnamon and anise, as well as other herbs.

Some specialists in bitters drinks have enumerated various ingredients that are required to be included in modern limet recipes according to liquor laws in the places where this drink is made. These include water and sugar, as well as herbs and spices, colorants, and citrus flavorings. Generally, those making this drink add a balance of savory and bitter tastes.

In general, the specific recipes for varieties of Eastern European bitters are carefully guarded secrets. Even where these might be generally known, ingredients might vary according to the maker. These drinks commonly rely on natural plant extracts. One of the stronger elements in some bitters is called wormwood, which has a strong and bitter taste, and is described as a volatile extract.

Some of the milder ingredients in limet and other kinds of bitters often include bay leaves and other elements like echinacea, ginseng, or sage. Some of these drinks might include fermented vegetables such as beets or turnips. Citrus peel and zest also complement many of these kinds of drinks.

The overall taste of limet has been described as a kind of tonic flavor. Its taste generally reminds drinkers of the older ages when medical professionals mixed complex compounds of vegetable or plant ingredients to treat various health conditions. When the bitter herbs are mixed with alcohol, the result is usually a strongly flavored, almost overpowering drink that takes some getting used to. Beginners might find the taste of this drink to be excessively strong, while those who are customs to drinking it will generally handle its aroma, taste, and gastrointestinal effects better.

Limet and some other similar drinks are often served as before-dinner drinks or aperatifs. Although their strong flavors might bother some drinkers, others use them to soothe the stomach before eating. These drinks are also used as secondary elements in cocktails and other alcoholic drinks.

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