Top 10 Best Schnapps Brands


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Schnapps has been largely ignored for the past 20 years and resigned to the back shelf. However, to quote the mighty LL Cool J, “Don’t call it a comeback/I’ve been here for years”. We have selected the 10 best schnapps brands that are perfect for sipping neat or as a fantastic addition to cocktails.

What Is Schnapps?

Schnapps is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented fruits, herbs, and spices which are then distilled to extract a pure form of the alcohol. Modern schnapps adds additional flavours such as mint, chocolate, and even butterscotch.

Schnapps has been enjoyed in Europe for centuries, particularly in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and the Scandinavian countries of Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. In 1758 Johann Bernhard Berentzen founded his distillery in Haselünne, Germany which has now grown into one of the largest schnapps producers worldwide.

How Is Schnapps Made?

Schnapps is traditionally made from a mixture of fruit juices (called mash) which is fermented to produce alcohol. The fermented mash is then distilled to extract the alcohol. The final schnapps spirit can vary between 15% to 40% Alcohol by Volume (ABV), which is 30 to 80 proof.

Top 10 Best Schnapps Reviewed

Here are the top 10 best schnapps brands that are packed with flavour and perfect for sipping neat. We have included both the traditional fruit variety, as well as delicious modern schnapps using a variety of exciting flavours.

1. Berentzen Plum Schnapps

Berentzen Plum Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Berentzen
  • ABV: 20% (40 Proof)
  • Country: Germany
  • Colour: Clear

Review

This brand has some history behind it. In 1758 Johann Bernhard Berentzen founded a small grain distillery in Haselünne, Germany. Their schnapps is still made there to this day.

Berentzen Plum Schnapps is still made the old fashioned way. They simply distil single-grain spirit with ripe plums to create a schnapps that is both smooth and well-balanced.

On The Nose

Fresh, crisp, with notes of plum, apricot and mild spices.

On The Palate

Gets straight to the point with clean, crisp notes of juicy, soft plum. Mid-palate sees apricot, mango and cinnamon. The finish is clean with a mixture of light fruits.

Summary

Berentzen Plum Schnapps is smooth, fruity, lightly spiced, and of course, packed with delightful plum flavour. Enjoy straight from the fridge.

2. Teichenné Butterscotch Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Teichenné
  • ABV: 17% (34 Proof)
  • Country: Spain
  • Colour: Clear

Review

Teichenné is pretty much the barman’s favourite when it comes to schnapps. They have been making schnapps since 1956 when Juan Teichenné Senaux founded his distillery in the small Spanish village of L’Arboç

As with all their schnapps, Teichenné Butterscotch Schnapps is made entirely of natural flavours, water from the Pyrenees then distilled with grain spirit. The outcome is a high-class schnapps. If this was vodka, it would be Belvedere.

On The Nose

Smooth, sweet and buttery.

On The Palate

Begins velvety smooth and sweet, yet not overpowering. The mid-palate becomes more buttered toffee and slightly milky. The finish is clean with toffee that lingers. Delightful.

Summary

Teichenné Butterscotch Schnapps is an indulgent combination of sweet, creamy, buttery notes Precisely how butterscotch schnapps should be.

3. J.H. Henkes’ Schnapps

J.H. Henkes’ Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: J H Henkes
  • ABV: 40% (80 Proof)
  • Country: Netherlands
  • Colour: Clear

Review

Henkes has been making schnapps for over 200 years. Interestingly was originally marketed as a health tonic, and is well known to be used to celebrate births, marriages and deaths in Nigeria.

J.H. Henkes’ Schnapps is made from select herbs and spices that are fermented with grain spirit. This mixture is then quadruple distilled for the cleanest schnapps experience you are ever likely to experience.

On The Nose

Fruity, slightly sweet, herbs and pepper.

On The Palate

Begins clean and crisp with quite a peppery profile. The mid-palate sees orchard fruits, herbs and roasted nuts. The finish is smooth, fresh and slightly peppery.

Summary

J.H. Henkes’ Schnapps is a tasty, high-quality schnapps from Holland that is not only fruity but nicely blended with herbs and nuts too.

4. Jungfrau Herbal Schnapps

Jungfrau Herbal Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Jungfrau
  • ABV: 22% (44 Proof)
  • Country: Germany
  • Colour: Brown

Review

Jungfrau Herbal Schnapps takes inspiration from the story of the Meyer brothers who wanted to scale the Swiss Bernese Mountains, known as the Jungfrau. In 1811 each had a flask of fermented herbs and spices to keep their spirits up on their arduous journey.

Jungfrau Herbal Schnapps contains a secret blend of more than 40 spices, herbs and roots that are fermented & distilled with alcohol. Fruits and flowers are also thrown in for good measure, which creates a rather eclectic taste and aroma.

On The Nose

A multitude of herbs and spices, almost medicine-like.

On The Palate

Bitter-sweet opening with some citrus zest and notes of star anise and liquorice. The mid-palate becomes peppery, with notes of sage, rosemary and cinnamon. The finish is warming with dark coffee and ginger.

Summary

Jungfrau Herbal Schnapps the Jägermeister of the schnapps world. It is a refreshing combination of exciting herbs and spices. Best served chilled, straight from the fridge.

5. Goldschläger Cinnamon Schnapps

Goldschläger Cinnamon Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Goldschläger
  • ABV: 40% (80 Proof)
  • Country: Germany
  • Colour: Clear

Review

Goldschläger is a Swiss brand that was bought out by an Italian company (Diageo) and moved to Italy, then later moved production back to Switzerland. Make your mind up guys!

Goldschläger is a Swiss cinnamon schnapps that has tiny, yet visible flakes of gold floating in the liquid. The German word Goldschläger means ‘goldbeater’. Not sure if this will make you more valuable after drinking a few glasses, but it cannot hurt to try.

On The Nose

Sweet cinnamon and spice

On The Palate

Begins syrupy and sweet then becomes a sizzle of pepper, cinnamon and other warming chilli-like spices. The mid-palate just adds more fuel to the fire! The finish is peppery and sweet cinnamon. Oh Boy.

Summary

Goldschlager Cinnamon Schnapps is a spicy/hot schnapps that leaves a trailing twang of pepper and cinnamon. Perfect for getting the party started. Watch out for the golden particles.

If you like spicy, then check out my review of 10 spiced rums to warm your cockles.

6. Teichenne Chocolate Schnapps

Teichenne Chocolate Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Teichenne
  • ABV: 20% (40 Proof)
  • Country: Spain
  • Colour: Clear

Review

Teichenné has been making schnapps since 1956 when Juan Teichenné Senaux founded his distillery in the small Spanish village of L’Arboç. In this time they have clearly learned a thing or two about quality schnapps, and it shows. You don’t become the barman’s favourite for nothing.

Teichenne Chocolate Schnapps is made entirely of natural ingredients, water from the Pyrenees and distilled with grain spirit. This is a high-class schnapps that never fails to impress.

On The Nose

Smooth, sweet and buttery.

On The Palate

Smooth, creamy and slightly sweet to start. The mid-palate is when the ever-so-rich cacao makes its entrance and delights the tastebuds. The finish is dark, almost powdery chocolate that just melts in the mouth. Leave you with a slightly creamy aftertaste.

Summary

Teichenné Chocolate Schnapps is a chocolate lover’s dream and provides a rich and dark cacao experience like no other. Fantastic on its own or as the perfect addition to a devilish chocolate martini.

7. Archers Peach Schnapps

Archers Peach Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Archers
  • ABV: 18% (36 Proof)
  • Country: England
  • Colour: Clear

Review

The Schnapps market was pretty much a one-horse race in the UK in the 1980s. This enabled Archers to gain a considerable following. Still instantly recognisable with their elegant white frosted bottle, Archers became one of the fastest-growing schnapps brands in the UK.

Make no mistake, when compared to other schnapps brands globally, Archers Peach Schnapps is still a major contender in the taste stakes. It is discreet peach but extremely enjoyable to sip neat.

On The Nose

Clean notes of peach and slight apricot.

On The Palate

Begins delicately very cleanly and sweet. The mid-palate is when fleshy peach takes centre stage and is juicy, succulent but not overstated. The finish is unusually dry for a schnapps. Fantastic.

Summary

In my mind, still the Daddy of peach schnapps. Deliciously balanced with a subtle rich peach flavour that’s is ever-so easy to drink.

8. Puchheimer Marillen Schnapps (Apricot)

Puchheimer Marillen Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Spitz Gesellschaft
  • ABV: 35% (70 Proof)
  • Country: Austria
  • Colour: Clear

Review

Puchheimer has been distilling precious fruit brandies and schnapps since 1857 using traditional Austrian methods. The Puchheim region of Austria is a huge source of inspiration for this distiller, with beautiful scenery and the spectacle of the Puchheim Castle nearby.

On The Nose

Fresh, crisp, with notes of apricot and mild spices.

On The Palate

Begins with clean, crisp notes of juicy apricot. Mid-palate sees more of a dried apricot taste and less sweetness with a hint of spice. The finish is fresh and fruity, very delicate.

Summary

Puchheimer Marillen Schnapps is an excellent apricot schnapps that is refreshing, crisp and fruity. It’s almost like a sweet gin.

9. Berentzen Apfel Schnapps (Apple)

Berentzen Apfel Schnapps (Apple)

Overview

  • Distiller: Berentzen
  • ABV: 18% (36 Proof)
  • Country: Germany
  • Colour: Clear

Review

In 1758 Johann Bernhard Berentzen founded a small distillery in Haselünne, Germany. Berentzen schnapps is still made at “The Berentzen Hof” (House of Berentzen).

Berentzen Apfel Schnapps is made from distilled single-grain spirit fresh sun-ripened apples. This apple schnapps is so smooth and well-balanced that it is hard to tell that you are actually drinking a spirit.

On The Nose

Crisp notes of juicy apple, soft caramel, and brown sugar.

On The Palate

Begins quite sweetly with clean, crisp notes of ripe apples. Mid-palate sees burnt sugar and caramel that creates an almost toffee-apple vibe. The finish is warmer with mild spice to give more of a freshly baked apple pie twang.

Summary

Berentzen Apfel is an excellent apple schnapps. It is clean, crisp, and just the right side of sweet. The balance of burnt sugar is nicely balanced with a hint of spice. Extremely easy to drink; you have been warned.

10. Schlenkerla Barrel Aged Smoked Malt Schnapps

Schlenkerla Barrel Aged Smoked Malt Schnapps

Overview

  • Distiller: Schlenkerla
  • ABV: 20% (40 Proof)
  • Country: Germany
  • Colour: Amber

Review

The Schlenkerla smoked beer brewery dates back to 1405 and is located in the old German town of Bamberg. The Trum family have been running the brewery for 6 generations. They have been using their popular smoked beer to make schnapps.

Schlenkerla Barrel Aged Smoked Malt Schnapps is the Schlenkerla smoked beer brewery’s interpretation of whisky, in schnapps form!

This schnapps is distilled from Schlenkerla smoked beer, which is brewed with barley malt and wheat malt and then distilled to extract the alcohol. The resulting schnapps is aged with Schlenkerla smoked malt in oak barrels.

On The Nose

Smokey/sweet malt and barley.

On The Palate

Begins smoothly and very smooth, with notes of malt and barley. The mid-palate is mildly smokey. The finish is clean with slight notes of cracked black pepper.

Summary

Schlenkerla Barrel Aged Smoked Malt Schnapps is a very unusual schnapps experience. It has the crisp freshness of schnapps combined with a smokey/woody smoothness of a malt whiskey. Highly recommended.

Conclusion

Well, that about wraps it up for our Top 10 Best Schnapps review. As you can see, there is a multitude of exciting flavours to try, and we have only scratched the surface of the many tastes available to delight your tastebuds.

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