Balkan Babba with YEBIGA RAKIJA for an Amazing Cocktail

Yebiga Rakija is a traditional Serbian plum brandy. They have recently come out with new signature cocktails in time to celebrate National Cocktail Day- or any day you’d like to have a fun and interesting new drink to show off with friends.

baba yaga drink

Yebiga Instant Sarma

If you haven’t heard of rakija before – it’s reminiscent of the rise of mezcal. This is a spirit that is generally unknown in the US and hails from the Balkans, but may just be the next big thing because it’s so very special and unique. It is also delicious, and true to its roots & tradition. Yebiga is always made from hyper-local ingredients from its native country, Serbia.

Yebiga partnered with acclaimed mixologist Naren Young to curate these signature cocktails that feature Yebiga’s two rakijas – PRVA and BELA. While Yebiga is traditionally served neat, the brand wanted to bring the drink to the US consumer, to really understand the spirit, and discover how special it really is. You know Americans- we like to get creative with things, haha. These signature Yebiga cocktails feature the rakija beautifully, showcasing what the product is all about and how it can be approachably mixed by any at-home imbiber. Not only that, but Rakija does have a different taste profile than many spirits out there, and mixing it in cocktails adds a unique signature to any drink.

According to one fan, “It’s bold, versatile and it’s a true discovery and adventure in a glass”.

When you take a look, you may also notice the unusual names of each Yebiga cocktail –and some gorgeous and fun filled cocktail photography incorporating chickens. Both are a nod to the infamous dark Balkan humor used throughout the brand’s entire identity. For example, the ‘We Need To Berry Baba’ alludes to the fact that in the Balkans, rakija can be found at any wedding…or funeral…and that no doubt, Yebiga would be an appropriate way to send off Baba.

Here’s a little more about Yebiga in general…

Yebiga Rakija is a premium, yet traditional Serbian fruit brandy crafted with centuries of Balkan distilling prowess at heart, honoring passed-down knowledge, the bounty of the land, the plum juice from the harvest and the culture of the Serbian people. It is the first quality rakija brought to the United States by founder and importer Bill Gould, who on his many tours in the Balkans, fell in love with the spirit and realized rakija was overwhelmingly unknown in the U.S. market. This special spirit arrived stateside in 2019 as one of the first, old-world, premium handcrafted rakija brands to ever be exported out of the Balkans.

Yebiga is one of those spirits that not many people know about but that has shaped the culture of a whole part of the world for the past 800 years. The brand’s philosophy as a company is to honor and respect the old-world tradition of producing the iconic, traditional fruit brandy of the region and its labels retain Serbian-Croatian names, a sense of humor and a stalwart refusal to compromise on quality and ingredients. Yebiga has brought the real taste of the Balkans to the U.S. with two rakijas on the market – PRVA & BELA:

  • PRVA (SRP $38.99) – Yebiga’s first expression to come stateside is a style that favors the Serbian methods of starting with fresh, ripe plums domestic to the region, hand-plucked and barrel aged for 18 months.

  • BELA ($29.99) – Yebiga’s youngest expression. This rakija is lighter, free of color and finished in stainless steel. BELA is smooth, delicious, and rustic, perfect for everyday occasions and cocktail experimentation.

The next time you are looking to try something new, why not give Yebiga Rakija a try? A little different, a little culture- who knows, maybe a new favorite drink.

Jenni Rivera La Gran Señora Tequila

Disclosure- We received the below in order to facilitate this review.  All opinions are our own and honest. Review by my husband, who is the expert in this area.

Tequila is a bit of an acquired taste, but once it is acquired it is difficult to turn away from a good one. One of those fine libations is the new Jenni Rivera La Gran Señora Tequila. This tequila was developed by famed Mexican-American singer songwriter, Jenni Rivera. As some of you know, Jenni Rivera was a Mexican music legend, who passed away recently in a plane crash. One of her final projects she was working on was this line of tequila which includes a blanco, reposado, and añejo. This tequila is based on the Jenni Reivera’s idea to compete with the Don’s of tequila and rise above them, as is the theme of her music.

pic2The tequila itself is quite good. I enjoy it straight in shots as is. The flavor is complex and definitely a tequila, with its bold flavors. I am not good at describing the palate of the tequila, but it has been described as, “Aromas of light fresh agave, citrus and fruit. On the palate extremely smooth, sweet. Light notes of citrus and fruit. Long-lasting finish with black pepper. “  I taste the citrus and the fruit, and it is smooth.  For those of you with more sophisticated tequila palates, hopefully that helps.
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