January 29, 2010

Norwegian Aquavit

If you live in the U.S., odds are you're not that familiar with Norwegian Aquavit. It's not readily available in liquor stores. "Our market is Norway and our job is to serve the Norwegian people," says Halvor Heuch, distiller and master blender of Norway's Arcus AS. Since aquavit is made with Scandinavian palates in mind and made to pair with Scandinavian foods, how would an American group of five professional wine tasters react to a three-course Scandinavian meal (authenticity of certain elements made possible thanks to IKEA), and a pairing of 10 different aquavits? Last night we cracked open the sampler pack I'd purchased during a recent trip to Norway to find out.

The result: We were overwhelmingly impressed.

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Anonymous said...

Well written and interesting to read. You know more about aquavit than I do - and I’m Norwegian!

Jimmy said...

I went to Norway a few years ago and fell in love with the stuff. We made it a quest to try them all as well. Our favorite standalone was Gammel Reserve, but when sipped alongside a good lager (my favorite way to enjoy it) our favorite was Loitens Linie. Now the question is, how can we get this stuff in the states. I know I can't get anything here in Birmingham, AL (AL laws are crap). Any luck in Atl?

Also, there are a couple companies in America that have started making the stuff. I've tried one that I really enjoyed that I picked up in San Francisco. North Shore Distillery's Aquavit.

Hope S. Philbrick said...

Hi Jimmy, A few aquavits are regularly in stock at liquor stores in Atlanta, including Loitens Linie. But before driving here, I'd recommend calling a specific store to see if it has what you're looking for (perhaps one of the Sherlock's locations: www.sherlocks.com). If they don't regularly carry the brand or style you seek, perhaps they can order it for you from the distributor. In fact, you may want to ask your favorite Birmingham AL liquor store if they're able to order what you want. Good luck!

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