Prague is a wonderful city, vibrant and full of people walking in the narrow streets of Praha 1. Now, a lot of them happen to be there on holiday, looking to party and have a good time. And as it happens, alcohol is usually a big part of their experience. If you are new to Prague and don't know where to start, this should be a great starting point with a few suggestions on what to drink!
Absinth is big in Prague. You will see the tourist shops and various corner stores stocking a variety of absinthe types as well as other absinthe flavoured items, such as absinthe chocolate. The proper way to drink absinthe is to slowly pour drops of iced water into it, as they pass through a spoon with holes with an ice cube on top. The water slowly melts the sugar and allows the mixture to blend properly. Also it looks really cool.
Hemingway Bar near Charles Bridge is a good place to go try that. The staff is quite friendly and they will help you select what absinthe you will enjoy better and explain the process. They also do good cocktails.
Sidenote 1: Hemingway has never been to this bar. They just named it after him because he liked absinthe.
Sidenote 2: Remember to be quiet when in Prague bars, as loud customers may be asked to leave. It is actually illegal to make noise after hours.
You will find that Czech wine is really tasty, so I recommend ordering some with your meal at a restaurant. I usually prefer red but the white is pretty good too. Alternatively, hot sweet wine is also available from numerous street vendors, much like mulled wine here around Christmas time. In terms of flavour though it uses apples instead of oranges so think of hot sangria instead.
Of course beer is on our list, as most people going to Prague are there to try its beer.
While you can order a beer pretty much anywhere you go, most places will only carry few brands, usually Urquell, Kozel and Staropramen.
What was unusual for me is that despite the brand your options will most of the time be light beer (lager), dark beer (kind of like sweet ale) or mixed (actually mixing the two apparently).
In order to try some more specialised beers the best option is to go to a brewery that makes its own or visit one of the numerous beer museums advertised on TripAdvisor.
One lovely beer surprise was this chocolate flavoured one that we found on the way to the castle. Very tasty and I totally recommend it.
There are also always non alcoholic options and very low alcohol ones like the lemon Staropramen.
BECHEROVKA & FERNET
These two traditional herbal liqueurs are more of an acquired taste. They can be used to create cocktails but since they were so different I decided to try them on their own. I have to admit it was a bit of a struggle drinking it and I'd probably not get the bottle but it's good to try them once. The John Lennon pub is a good place for a pit stop for some drinks.
While originally an Italian drink, a lot of Prague bars will be offering this drink in their menu. It is a mix of Advocaat or eggnog with brandy and it's served warm. It tasted like a hot Cadbury egg and I liked it a lot. If you have the chance you should give it a try.
Whatever drinks you like, just wander around the city and stop at as many cafes, bars and pubs as you can. Since there's something to discover around every corner, Prague is not a place to go to one bar and drink all night. So, go out and explore with your legs, eyes and mouths!
Have you been to Prague before? What drinks did you enjoy?
Leave a comment to let me know.