What are some substitutes for cherry brandy

Kirschwasser - the classic

This noble fruit brandy is popularly known as cherry brandy or Kirsch for short. It is considered to be the most famous fruit brandy in Germany and according to the guidelines it is only made with the fruit that gives it its name. In this case, cherries.
Burning cherries are generally used because, unlike table cherries, they have less pulp and are smaller, darker and sweeter. There are different types, such as Dollenseppler, Benjaminer and Schüttler.
But why is the distillate called water, despite the high volume percentage? The reason is the maturation in containers made of earthenware or glass, which preserves the colorlessness. However, the name cherry brandy is also common.

In general, the difference between spirit and brand is in the manufacturing process. For example, it is cherry spirit when the cherries are soaked in alcohol and so they give off their aromas. If the cherries are burned and fermentation takes place, it is called cherry brandy.

Production of kirsch

  • First, the cherries are picked, mostly by hand.
  • After the stems, any leaves and twigs have been removed, the harvest is mashed in distilleries. There is one liter of kirsch for every ten liters of cherries.
  • The addition of pure yeast converts the sugar into alcohol and carbonic acid.
  • After fermentation, the mash is stored until the aromas are formed. At this point the alcohol content of the mash is around 6-8% vol.
  • This is followed by the distillation process in stills and the subsequent maturation.
  • Finally, the cherry schnapps is finished by adding softened water to the distillate in order to achieve the desired drinking strength.
  • Finally, the spirits are bottled after a final filtering.

Black Forest Kirsch

A worldwide known and legal designation: In 1909 the order was given to produce a “real, unadulterated and pure Black Forest cherry brandy”. The resulting strict quality standard and the special geographical definition still exist today. This means that the kirsch with the designation of origin must be produced in a distillery in the Black Forest. In addition, it may only be made from so-called black cherries from the Black Forest or from nearby foreland such as the Ortenau or the Kaiserstuhl. In addition, sugar to improve the taste or the addition of other ingredients is prohibited.
The minimum alcohol content of kirsch is around 40% vol.

Kirsch and salt? - The cure

The mixture of cherry brandy and salt is used as a home remedy for physical ailments. Apparently it helps with sleep disorders, joint pain, flu, upset stomach, toothache, asthma, inflammation, etc.
You can drink it or rub it on the affected area. But be careful: Others strongly advise against this cherry-salt treatment, as its use can harm instead of healing.


By the way, Kirschwasser is also available in discount stores such as Aldi and Lidl, as well as Rewe and Kaufland. Of course, there are also various brands and labels for this popular fruit brandy, from which it can be seen which distillery they come from. The best known are among others Lörch Kirschwasser, Schladerer Kirschwasser, but also Ziegler and Scheibel Kirschwasser.

Recipes - step-by-step instructions

In addition, kirsch is a very popular ingredient in cooking and baking. For an alcohol-free variant, for example in the cake, a neural fruit brandy can also be used. For example, grain or gin mixed with 2 tablespoons of cherry juice.

Black Forest cake (with alcohol)


For the sponge cake base:
5 Eggs
175 gsugar
1 pck.vanilla sugar
125 gFlour
2 teaspoons, leveled.baking powder
50 gfood starch
15 gCocoa powder, unsweetened
For the filling: (cherry filling)
350 gSour cherries from the glass
30 gfood starch
25 gsugar
3 tbspKirsch
For the filling: (cream filling)
800 gWhipped cream
40 gsugar
1 pck.vanilla sugar
2 pck.Cream stiffener
For decoration:
100 gGrated chocolate
50 gCherries


Time: approx. 2 hours

  1. Separate the eggs and beat the egg whites with half of the sugar until stiff
  2. Beat the egg yolks with the remaining 12.5 g sugar until creamy, add to the egg white and stir in
  3. Mix the flour with cornstarch, cocoa and baking powder and sieve onto the batter mixture
  4. Also add vanilla sugar and mix everything with a spoon
  5. Spread the dough smooth in a size 26 springform pan (lined with baking paper), bake in the preheated oven to 180 ° C top / bottom heat for about 25 minutes
  6. Loosen the edge of the springform pan and turn the base out (on a wire rack lined with baking paper)
  7. Remove the springform base so that the sponge cake base can cool down
  8. For the cherry filling: Drain the cherries on a sieve, collect 250ml of the liquid
  9. Mix the cornstarch with sugar and 4 tablespoons of the liquid
  10. Bring the rest of the liquid to the boil, stir in the starch, briefly bring to the boil, stir in the cherries and chill
  11. Whip the cream with sugar, vanilla sugar and cream stiff until stiff
  12. Carefully remove the baking paper from the biscuit base and cut the base twice horizontally
  13. Place the bottom base on a cake plate and put the springform ring back on to make stacking easier
  14. Brush with the cherry mixture and 1/3 of the cream
  15. Stack the middle base, press lightly and spread the rest of the cream on top
  16. Meanwhile, pour 3 tablespoons of the cream into a piping bag and set aside
  17. Put on the upper floor and also press it lightly
  18. Brush the surface and the edge with the rest of the cream
  19. Finally, decorate with the piping bag, grated chocolate and cherries and serve

Eggnog with kirsch


12Egg yolks
200 gextra fine sugar, dissolves better
250 mlcream
2 sachetsVanilla sugar
500 mlKirsch


  1. Beat the egg yolks with the kirsch
  2. Add the cream, sugar and vanilla sugar
  3. Continue beating for about 3 minutes
  4. The liqueur can be stored in the refrigerator if it is to be stored for more than 14 days

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