Skip to Content

What Does Malört Taste Like? Taste Good or Bad?

Malört  Malört is a unique spirit that has gained notoriety for its intensely bitter taste. The drink is native to Chicago, where it has been produced since the 1930s. Despite its popularity in the city, Malört remains a mystery to many outside of the Midwest. The spirit is often described as an acquired taste, with some drinkers swearing by its unique flavor and others finding it downright revolting.

Malört’s history is rooted in Swedish culture, where it was traditionally consumed as a digestif after a heavy meal. The drink was brought to the United States by Swedish immigrants and eventually made its way to Chicago, where it was embraced by the city’s drinking culture. Today, Malört is often consumed as a shot, with many bars in Chicago offering it as a rite of passage for visitors to the city.

Key Takeaways

  • Malört is a unique spirit with a long history in Swedish and Chicagoan culture.
  • The drink is known for its intensely bitter taste, which some drinkers find unpleasant.
  • Malört is often consumed as a shot and has become a rite of passage for visitors to Chicago.

History of Malört


Malört has a long and interesting history, dating back to the early 19th century. The bitter liqueur is made from wormwood, a plant known for its strong and bitter flavor. Malört originated in Sweden, where it was traditionally used as a digestive aid.

In the late 1800s, Swedish immigrant Carl Jeppson brought the recipe for malört with him to Chicago. He began producing and selling the liqueur under the name Jeppson’s Malört. The drink gained popularity in the city, particularly among the Scandinavian community.

During Prohibition in the 1920s, malört continued to be produced and sold illegally. In fact, it was often used as a substitute for whiskey, which was much harder to come by. After Prohibition ended, Jeppson’s Malört became a legal product once again.

Jeppson’s Malört was a staple of Chicago’s drinking culture for many years, but it remained relatively unknown outside of the city. This changed in the early 2000s, when a group of bartenders and enthusiasts began to champion the drink and its unique flavor.

Today, malört is still produced and sold by Jeppson’s, as well as a handful of other distilleries. It remains a divisive drink, with some people loving its bitter taste and others finding it nearly undrinkable. Nonetheless, malört has become a beloved part of Chicago’s drinking culture and a symbol of the city’s unique history.

See also  The 3 Best Substitutes For Sorrel

Taste Profile

Malört is a bitter spirit that is famous for its rugged and unrelenting taste. The signature taste of malört is often described as a combination of burning garbage, hops, burnt rubber, and herbal bitterness.

The taste of malört is incredibly bitter, with a distinct flavor that is often compared to grapefruit, medicinal herbs, and pencil shavings. The bitterness of malört is so intense that it can be difficult for some people to drink, and it is often recommended that it be sipped slowly to fully appreciate its unique flavor profile.

The aroma of malört is also quite distinct, with notes of anise, licorice, and baby aspirin. The palate of malört is dry and bitter, with a pronounced bitterness that lingers on the tongue long after the drink is finished.

Some people have described the taste of malört as similar to rubbing alcohol, ashtray, or even earwax. However, despite its strong flavor and bitter taste, malört has become a beloved spirit in certain circles, with fans praising its pure and unadulterated bitterness.

Overall, malört is a spirit that is not for everyone, but for those who appreciate bitter herbs and strong flavors, it is a unique and unforgettable experience.

Consumption and Mixology


Malört is a liquor that is usually consumed as a shot. It is not typically mixed with other liquors due to its strong and bitter taste. While some people may enjoy the taste of malört, it is generally considered an acquired taste and not recommended for those who are new to liquor.

For those who are looking to mix malört into a cocktail, there are a few recipes available online. One popular recipe is the “Malört and Cola,” which mixes malört with cola to create a slightly sweeter taste. Another recipe is the “Malört and Ginger Ale,” which mixes malört with ginger ale to create a spicier taste. However, it is important to note that malört is still the dominant flavor in these cocktails and may not be suitable for everyone’s taste buds.

Malört has gained popularity in recent years due to the “Malört Challenge,” where individuals take a shot of malört and attempt to keep a straight face despite the bitter taste. This challenge has become popular in bars and among groups of friends.

See also  What Does Horse Taste Like? Taste Good or Bad?

Malört is available for purchase at liquor stores and can be found in both shot and bottle form. It is also commonly found in bars, particularly in Chicago where it originated. The Violet Hour, a popular cocktail bar in Chicago, even features a cocktail on their menu called the “Malört Face,” which is made with malört and absinthe.

Overall, malört is a unique and polarizing liquor that is best consumed by those who enjoy bitter and strong flavors. While it may not be for everyone, it has developed a cult following and is a staple in the Chicago drinking scene.

Production Process

Malört is a Swedish liqueur that is made by infusing wormwood with a neutral spirit. The production process is relatively simple and involves the following steps:

  1. Harvesting and Drying Wormwood: The first step in the production process is to harvest the wormwood plant, which is also known as Artemisia absinthium. The plant is then dried to remove any moisture.
  2. Infusing Wormwood: Once the wormwood is dried, it is infused with a neutral spirit, such as vodka or grain alcohol. The wormwood is left to steep in the spirit for several days to extract its bitter flavor.
  3. Adding Other Ingredients: After the wormwood has been infused, other ingredients are added to the mixture. These can include juniper berries, aniseed seeds, and other herbs and spices.
  4. Aging and Filtering: The mixture is then aged in a dark place at room temperature to allow the flavors to meld together. The mixture is then filtered to remove any impurities.
  5. Bottling: Finally, the malört is bottled and ready for consumption.

During the production process, it is important to maintain a consistent temperature to prevent mold growth. The malört is typically stored at room temperature or chilled before serving. The color of the malört can vary from clear to a light amber color depending on the ingredients used and the aging process. Overall, the production process for malört is relatively straightforward and produces a unique and distinct flavor.

Public Perception and Reaction


Malört has a reputation for being an acquired taste, and many people have strong opinions about it. The bitter taste of malört is often described as harsh and unpleasant, with some likening it to gasoline or burnt rubber. Despite this, there are still many fans of the drink who enjoy its unique flavor.

On social media, malört has become something of a meme, with many people sharing videos of themselves trying it for the first time and reacting with disgust. Some have even coined the term “malört face” to describe the contorted expression that often accompanies the first sip.

See also  What Does Tamarind Taste Like? Taste Good or Bad?

In Chicago, where malört is most popular, the drink has become something of a cultural icon. It is often served as a rite of passage for visitors to the city, with locals challenging them to try it and see if they can handle the taste. This has led to a kind of pride among Chicagoans who can handle the drink, with many considering it a badge of honor.

Despite its harsh taste, malört has developed a loyal following over the years. Some drinkers appreciate its unique flavor and the challenge of drinking something so bitter. Others enjoy the ritual of taking a shot of malört with friends, often as a way to mark a special occasion.

Overall, malört is a polarizing drink that elicits strong reactions from those who try it. While some regret their decision to take a sip, others embrace the challenge and enjoy the taste. Whether you love it or hate it, there’s no denying that malört has made a lasting impression on the drinking world.

Historical and Medicinal Use


Malört has a long history of use in traditional medicine. It has been used to treat a variety of ailments, including stomach worms and parasites. The bitter taste of malört is thought to be effective in expelling these parasites from the body.

In addition to its medicinal use, malört has also been used by pharmacists as a flavoring agent in various medicines. The bitter taste of malört was believed to have a tonic effect on the digestive system, and it was often added to medicines to help stimulate the appetite and promote digestion.

Malört’s distinctive yellow hue is due to the presence of an essential oil called absinthin, which is also found in wormwood. Absinthin is believed to have a number of medicinal properties, including anti-inflammatory and antipyretic effects.

Despite its historical use in traditional medicine, there is little scientific evidence to support the efficacy of malört as a medicinal treatment. However, the bitter taste of malört remains a popular ingredient in a variety of cocktails and other alcoholic beverages.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.