Souvenirs from Polish supermarket
Don’t need another fridge magnet? Not so keen on having more knickknack from your travels, but still want to buy something for yourself and the folks back home? The shelves of the Polish supermarkets are well-stocked with Polish food treats and products ideal for a gift.
This is a sample of some of the souvenirs you could bring from the Polish supermarkets.
Let’s start with the obvious – the vodka.
Polish vodka has been known since the early Middle-Ages. At first consumed as a medicine, now it’s a popular party drink. Plenty to choose from:
Pure vodka – Belvedere, Chopin, Luksusowa, Pan Tadeusz, Sobieski, Wyborowa (these are the main brands, but there is more) –
Flavored vodka – Krupnik (slight touch of honey and herbs), Żubrówka (also known as Bison Vodka, with one stalk of bison grass for sweeter taste and amber colour), Gorzka Żoladkowa (smooth herbal taste), and endless vodkas flavoured with various fruits like cherries, plums, raspberries and more.
Vodka produced in Bielsko-Biała: e.g. Extra Żytnia, Polonia (top premium class), Tatra, Złoty Kłos, Oginski, Extra Żytnia Owocowa, Nisskosher Vodka (kosher), Dziegielowka (herbal), Wodka Gorzka Orzechowa (walnut flavor).
2. Beer and liquors
Recently, beer disqualified vodka as the most popular alcohol in Poland. Small microbreweries, with unique flavoured beers and traditional methods of brewing, are particularly popular.
Beer produced in Bielsko-Biala: Bielitzer
Polish liqueurs ‘nalewka’ go way back in Polish drinking traditions. Usually made of fruits, herbs and spices, but it’s still strong alcohol that often contains around 40 percent of alcohol.
Mead, miód pitny in Polish, is one of the most traditional Polish alcohols. It’s made by fermenting honey with water. It has various alcohol concentration and sweetness, depending on percentage of units of water and honey.
Polish kielbasa (sausage) is a signature product of Polish cuisine. Kielbasa comes in various shapes, sizes and tastes. It’s usually flavoured with pepper, garlic, marjoram or other spices, all depends on the recipes used, which by the way are always strictly followed. Sausages, except for the biała kielbasa (raw white sausage, often served in soups), are ready for consumption as they are smoked or dried.
Moving on to sweets… There are plenty of sugary snacks and gifts to choose from in the Polish supermarkets. Top products include: Krówki (fudge), pierniki (ginger-breads), ptasie mleczko (chocolate coated marsh-mellows), chocolate coated dried fruits and nuts, wafer biscuits of all sorts, liqueur chocolate, galaretka (sugar coated jellies) and various of chocolate candies.
Sweets made in Bielsko-Biała: Krówki Mleczne and Karmello – hand-made luxury chocolate.
Yet another sweet food made by tireless efforts of bees, which can be a great gift from Poland. You will have to choose from a variety of colours and tastes, all depending on the kind of plant from which the nectar was collected.
8. Kawa zbożowa
Kawa zbożowa, roasted grain coffee is a caffeine-free drink that is a popular coffee substitute and often consumed in Poland. It’s made of rye, barley, chicory and sugar beet and is suitable for pretty much everyone, including children. It can be a rather unusual gift.
9. Dried or marinated wild mushrooms
If there is one thing that Polish people are crazy about – it would be wild mushrooms. Many Poles collect their own stock for the year, but otherwise, fungi are available dried or marinated in most of the supermarkets.
10. Healthy food and snacks
Herbs, herbal teas, nuts, grains, organic jams and preserves, seeds, dried fruits – plenty to choose from for those who like to keep their food gifts healthy and nutritious.