Wiśniówka is a Polish nalewka – an aged cordial. The most common types are made with fruit and either vodka or rectified spirits. This recipe for cherry nalewka or wiśniówka is traditionally made with Morello cherries, a sour type of cherry. If Morello cherries aren’t available in your area, you can use other sour or sweet cherries instead. Nalewki make excellent edible gifts, so plan accordingly when making them for Christmas.
Wiśniówka (Polish Cherry Liqueur)
- 1 – 1,5kg of cherries
- 500ml of 95% proof alcohol (e.g. Everclear or Golden Grain)
- 200ml of water, boiled and cooled down
- 500g of sugar
- Wash and pit the cherries. Discard the pits.
- Mix alcohol with water.
- Place cherries in a glass jar and pour over the alcohol mixture. Seal the jar with a lid and set aside in a cool, dark area to macerate for 6 weeks. Shake the jar occasionally.
- After 6 weeks, pour the cherry-infused alcohol from the jar into a bottle and mix the remaining fruit with sugar. Seal the jar with a lid again and set it aside in a cool, dark area.
- Over the next days, the sugar will dissolve, forming a syrup – the second part of our liqueur. It is worth shaking the contents of the jar from time to time. When all the sugar is dissolved (this can take up to 2 weeks), combine the syrup with the cherry-infused alcohol.
- Filter the liquid through a clean, dry cloth or wire mesh strainer. Pour the filtered liqueur into a new bottle to age for at least three months.
Wiśniówka unfolds its full flavor after about one year of aging, but you can taste it after those initial three months ;).