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What to drink in Transylvania: From wine to home-brewed “tuica”

There are so many things you can discover in Transylvania, but one of the best experiences might turn out to be tasting local beverages.

You will be amazed by the variety of local liquors, brandies, and wines made in Transylvania and available in many local bars or restaurants.

For your next trip to Transylvania, add to your travel wishlist the following unique beverages you will only find in this area.

Transylvania Wine

Did you know that Transylvania has a wide array of wine cellars with locally produce wine blends?

Well, the grapes harvested in this area have a unique taste, which makes the wines stand out as one of the most exquisite ones.

There are more than 45 wine cellars in Transylvania, yet some of the most favorite wine types remain those made near Cluj County. Some of the earliest wine blends documented in Cluj is known as Vinum de Hoiat.

And if you want to get the chance to explore a wide array of wine assortments in Transylvania, you should know that there are plenty of events in Cluj dedicated to this beverage.

As an example, we do encourage you to attend the WineUp Fair Festival in Transylvania, a local event organized yearly to promote local wine cellars and distributors.

Transylvania craft beer

Of course, Transylvania is mostly famous due to the impressive collection of locally crafted beer blends.

And we can say from our experience that you won’t get enough time to taste them all! That’s how many they are! Some of our favorite local beers produced in Transylvania include the Lăpușna beer. This is a blond and red beer, unfiltered, and made exclusively from pure mountain water, as the traditional recipe indicates.

Also, another interesting beverage you need to try while visiting Transylvania is Harvester Cider. Produce in Zimborul, Salaj County, it firstly appeared on the market back in 2016. But thanks to the all-natural ingredients used, only fresh fruits added, it gained a lot of popularity. You can opt between a cider made from apples and pear or the mulled cider.

Hophead Brewing is also a craft beer produced in Transylvania, but it is a brand easily found in most bars and pubs in Cluj County. It is a microbrewery from Cluj, with a wide array of blends and types of beers. And if you are lucky enough, their Cluj headquarters organize small tasting sessions for you to get a glimpse of the authentic taste.

Photo by Theodor Vasile on Unsplash

Home-made Tuica

Lastly, but not the least important, all over Transylvania people talk about their home-made tuica or palinka. This is an alcoholic beverage produced in autumn, based on a specific process.

Usually made from plums, the fruits are left for fermentation for up to eight weeks in large barrels. Afterward, the mixture undergoes distillation in a rather traditional approach: a brass still is used and positioned on a wood fire.

Based on the temperature of the fire, one can achieve a home-made tuica of 24-40% alcohol or more than 50%.

Whatever your libation of choice, you're sure to have a pleasant surprise tasting Transylvania's liquid treasures.