Clear brandy distilled from cherry wine. Not be confused with sweetened cherry brandies, which frequently have red food coloring added. Kirsch is popular in Germany and Switzerland.

German Kirschwasser comes from the region of the Black Forest (Because of how dense and black the forest in this region once was) in South Germany from where the Black Forest Cake also comes from.


Other names: Kirschwasser
Translations: Ķiršu liķieris, カーシュ, Vyšninė, ماء الكرز, Wiśniówka, Кирш, קירש, Кірш, 基尔希, Кирш, Кирш

Physical Description

Kirsh is clear brandy. It was originally made from sour black cherries, but now they use both sweet and sour black cherries along with their pits.

Colors: transparent

Tasting Notes

Flavors: just a hint of sweetness and very fragrant
Mouthfeel: Strong, Dry
Food complements: Fondue, Cherries jubillee
Wine complements: Cognac
Beverage complements: Cherry liqueur, Cola
Substitutes: Eau de vie, Grappa, Poire william, Cognac

Selecting and Buying

Seasonality: january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, opctober, november, december
Choosing: Kirsch is different from colored cherry brandies. Kirsh is clear, dry, and has a higher alcohol content.

When most folks refer to cherry brandy especially for making cocktails, they are probably looking for something dark colored, sweet and a low alcohol content. You can use Bols cherry brandy for this.

Buying: You can buy Kirsch at any supermarkets and local liquor store.

Preparation and Use

Kirsch or Kirschwasser is traditionally served in small glasses as an appetizer before dinner or family gatherings. In Germany however, it is served after dinner in a snifter. It can also be added to coffee and espresso drinks.

It is quite strong, so be careful when making cocktails with it. You may need a cherry brandy like Bols for making cocktails and not Kirsch.

Kirsch is an essential ingredient of Swiss cheese fondue and of some cakes. It can also be used in the filling of chocolates.

Conserving and Storing

Store the bottle in a cool, dry place.


Kirsch is an essential ingredient of Swiss cheese fondue and of some cakes.

It is used in traditional German Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte (Black Forest Gateau, which is believed to have originated in the 16th century) and in other cakes — for example in Gugelhupf cake.

History: Because morellos were originally grown in the Black Forest region of southern Germany, Kirschwasser is believed to have originated there.

Kirschwasser is colourless because it is either not aged in wood or is aged in barrels made of ash. It may have been aged in paraffin-lined wood barrels or in earthenware vessels.



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