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What is Ginjinha

Ginjinha Liqueur

a couple drinking ginjinha PortugalGinjinha is a Portuguese liqueur. This sweet liqueur is made of cherry.

Why we have this name? Because this is infusing has a unique cherry, which Portuguese name is Ginja (Prunus cerasus austera, Morello cherry). In Portuguese, Ginjinha is the diminutive name.

Ginjinha Liqueur’s History

This liqueur was created by a Galician friar, who was working in Portugal in the Saint Antony’s Church. Francisco Espinheira did the experience of leaving ginja berries in aguardiente (Portuguese brandy, a powerful distilled alcohol).

According to history, success was immediate in Lisbon. The first story in Lisbon to commercialize the drink was “A Ginjinha.”  A Ginjinha (the bar) opened in 1840. And it is still open! This family business is in the hands of the fifth generation. The Location is Largo São Domingos, between Teatro Nacional D. Maria II and St Domingos’ Church.

How do you drink Ginjinha?

a person holding a ginjinha chocolate cupsGinjinha is served in a shot glass with one gray cherry at the bottom of the glass. Unfortunately, we have some stores using plastic cups. At the end of the day, the nearby waste bins are full of trash.

In Óbidos, Ginjinha is usually served in a small edible chocolate cup. I like this option, but sometimes the chocolate has a low quality, damaging the experience!

How many calories have a glass of Ginjinha?

A shot glass of Ginjinha Liqueur has 103 calories.

How much is Ginjinha’s price?

A shot costs or Ginjinha in a chocolate cup costs 1€ – 1,50€. A bottle costs 7€ – 15€.

Ginjinha Recipe

  • 1-kilo cherries stemmed and cleaned with the pit.
  • 1-liter vodka or firewater.
  • 3 cups Water
  • 2 cups Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Red Wine
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 3 Cloves

Add the cherries, vodka, cinnamon, and cloves into a jar or bottle.

Cover one time per month shakes well to ensure that all the hooch gets into contact with all the cherries and spices.

When the cherries without color and the vodka has turned red, it is time to make your syrup. Bring the sugar and water to boil on the stove, then turn off the heat, cover, and allow it to cool completely. Strain the vodka into a mixing bowl, and set the cherries aside for later use. Put the cinnamon and cloves in the trash.

Add the syrup and half a cup of red wine. Mix well.

Split the spent cherries between two bottles, and pour the liquid on top. Add the liqueur. Close the bottle and allow the liqueur to age for one to three months before drinking.

How much alcohol contents in the Ginjinha?

Ginjinha has an alcohol percentage of 19%.

Where to drink Ginjinha

Historical places in Lisbon:

  • Ginginha sem Rival – Rua das Portas de Santo Antão, 7.
  • A Ginjinha – Largo de São Domingos, 8.
  • Ginjinha Rubi – Rua de Barros Queirós, 29.

We can suggest more places, but these are the most famous in Lisbon.

a couple of people drinking ginjinha obidosAnother city:

Óbidos is well-preserved medieval architecture making it one of the most beautiful places to visit.

Ginja of Obidos (brand) is a very similar drink but produced in the pretty town, and is widely sold throughout Portugal.

What to visit in Óbidos: Churches, Castel, and bookstores, there are so many things to see here. However, the castle is now a luxurious hotel.

Óbidos is a town full of life, with so many events throughout the year. In July, the castle hosts a traditional Medieval Market, recreating medieval Europe’s spirit. In March/April, there is a Chocolate Festival, and at Christmas, the town has decorations and activities for families.

My last suggestion: Chocolate Cake with Ginjinha.

Cook a simple chocolate cake. A dry cake without cream. Then, drill the cake with a fork and drizzle the cake with Ginjinha. Serve the cake with vanilla ice cream. Enjoy!

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