7 Swiss winter drinks you need to try (recipes inside!)

Swiss Winter Drinks - Glühmost

Switzerland has almost as many winter drinks as it has snow-covered mountains.

Even though the Swiss might not have a reputation for drinking a lot, a rich drinking tradition continues throughout the land at the heart of Europe. After all, one of the world's most famous spirits, absinthe, originated in French speaking Switzerland.

Swiss farmers make spirits with every possible fruit (and even hay) on their farms. You can find coffee spiked with all sorts of Schnaps in almost every restaurant. If you live outside Switzerland you might not know that the Swiss make some truly excellent wine. That's because nearly all of their wine is consumed within Switzerland – less than 3 percent makes it out of the country!

To update your knowledge of Swiss drinks, we have collected a few winter warmers for you to try. Whether you drink them for après-ski, or you skip the skiing altogether, these warm, spirited concoctions are bound to warm your belly. So let's raise a glass and drink like the Swiss.

Proscht! Santé! Salute!

 

Flämmli Winter Drink

This is a boozy coffee, set aflame! A poorly orchestrated one might split your cup clean in half.

Here's how to avoid this: Make an espresso, add 2 tbsp sugar or 2 sugar cubes. Do not stir! Drink the espresso, but make sure you leave the sugar at the bottom of the cup. Add a shot of Williams.

Take a bit of booze out with your spoon – and light it on fire! Tip the booze back into the cup, it will still burn. Use the spoon to lift the sugar into the flame to let it caramelize. Put out the flame with the saucer or your flat palm. Let cool, then enjoy!

READ
Skiing in Verbier with Snow 'n' Rail

 

Schümli Pflümli

Mix one part coffee and one part Zwetschgen schnaps. Add a generous amount of whipped cream – and enjoy!

Swiss Winter Drinks - Schümli Pflümli

 

Holdrio

Mix two parts Zwetschgen schnaps with one part rosehip tea. Add a sugar cube and your Holdrio is good to go!

 

Füdliwärmer

Mix one part coffee, abricotine, träsch (spirit distilled from apples and pears), and Zwetschgen schnaps each.

 

Hypokras

It is in Basel where Hypokras, festive spiced wine, is most beloved today. The locals love it so much, they will even temporarily pour Hypokras from the Dreizackbrunnen fountain on New Year's Day! With a glass in one hand and a Basler Läckerli in the other, it is the perfect way to start the year off right.

Swiss Winter Drinks - Hypokras

Gather the following ingredients and place them in a large pot. Warm it up over medium heat, but avoid to boil it.

  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 50 g sugar
  • 3 cloves
  • 3 slices of ginger
  • 2 lemons, sliced
  • 1 cup of black tea
  • 3 oranges, sliced
  • A bottle of white wine
  • A bottle of red wine

 

Glühmost

This is a wonderful alternative for children who can't drink the heady and alcoholic Glühwein oft he Christmas season – though you can always use boozy cider if the occasion demands.

Swiss Winter Drinks - Glühmost

You will need these ingredients:

  • 2 oranges
  • 1 lemon
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • A nub of ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 4 cloves
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 vanilla bean, sliced open
  • 1 liter of Süssmost (clear apple juice)

With a vegetable peeler, peel off a few thin sections of rind. Juice the lemon and the oranges and add them to the pot. Add the rest of the ingredients. Warm over medium heat, but avoid boiling. Serve warm.

READ
Some nostalgic thoughts about ski lifts

 

Nocino Toddy

Nocino is a bittersweet liqueur made from green walnuts. It is particularly enjoyed in Ticino, although it is not unique to that region. Stunningly, there is a possibility that Nocino has been produced in Ticino monasteries since the 1500's!

Add the following to a mug, then fill it up with hot water or tea:

  • 1 part Nocino
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Juice of half a lemon

Cheers!

Swiss Winter Drinks - Schümli Pflümli
 

For nearly 100 Swiss winter drink recipes, consider the book "Drink like the Swiss":

Drink like the Swiss (berglibooks.ch)
Andie Pilot
ISBN 978-3-03869-049-8
English, 96 pages
CHF 24.90

Drink Like the Swiss - Bergli Books

Follow me

Dimitri Burkhard

Founder, Editor-in-Chief at Newly Swissed GmbH
As the founder, editor and community manager of Newly Swissed, Dimitri owns the strategic vision. He is passionate about storytelling and is a member of the Swiss Travelwriters Club.

Dimitri loves discovering new trends and covers architecture, design, start-ups and tourism.
Follow me