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Leonid Gelibterman on air on “Mayak” radio told about alcohol drinks, produced in Ancient Russia

To answer the questions of the program hosts - Anastasiya Drapenko and Evgeniy Stakhovskiy was offered in the rubric “The nation’s treasure. About alcohol in Ancient Russia”. 78ufll

The main question of the discussion was “what kind of alcohol was in Ancient Russia before any marketing activities of the Western companies, what did our grandfathers and great grandfathers drink?”

It turned out that one of the first alcohol drinks in Ancient Russia was the one based on honey, which later got the name “medovykha” (from Russian “med” – “honey”). And there were also different ways of its preparation. For example to prepare drinking honey the one should dig a barrel of honey and keep it in the ground for a long time – up to 40 years! Heady honey had easier way of preparation – it took around 3 years. The matter is that hop was added to the mixture. The most common way of “medovykha” (honey drink) preparation was brewing – honey was boiled and then mixed with ferment.

Besides of honey drink our ancestors drank “sbiten”. “Sbiten” – is very old East-Slavic drink produced from water, honey and spices, among which were healing herbs. The earliest mention about “sbiten” was found in chronicles dated by 1128.u77

Everyone believes that vodka is absolutely and totally Russian drink. It turned out that in Soviet times Poland claimed the right to call this country the motherland of vodka! But still after the decision of the international arbitration in 1982 USSR was confirmed as a priority vodka producing state. Vodka considered as authentic Russian alcohol drink and USSR got the exclusive right to advertise this drink under the name “vodka”.


The audience of the radio program had a chance to ask questions by calling or sending an SMS.

The record of the program is available by the link:




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