When heading to Vietnam, you’re most likely thinking about what kind of beer you’re going to have to wash down your delicious Vietnamese cuisine with.
What most people heading to Vietnam are not aware of is that beer isn’t always the only beverage option they have. If you’re looking for more than just a little buzz, then Vietnamese rice wine is absolutely a must-try while in this beautifully unique country. Though there are several different types, here are the three that you are most likely to come across while paying a visit to Vietnam…
1. Ruou Gao
The name of this first one actually depends on where it is produced, which makes Ruou Gao from the north and Ruou de from the south. The way this particular rice wine is made begins with cooking the rice and then mashing it once it is fully cooked. Once that is completed, water and a precise amount of yeast are added to it and all that is left to do is leave it to be fermented. It’s of course always important to remember that rice wine has a substantial amount of alcohol within it and is always to be drunk with the highest caution of consumption.
2. Ruou Can
In English, this would be translated into ‘party wine’ and it is known to be many people’s favorite of the several different types available. This is also a somewhat special type and is served most likely at big weddings and parties as well as the Vietnamese New Year Festival. What makes this type of rice wine different from the rest is that it is actually not distilled. What they do instead is add in several natural ingredients such as tree bark, black sticky rice, tree bark and herbs and wait a whopping two or three weeks for it to be completely fermented.
3. Ruou Thuoc
With over 100 different types, this rice wine is known literally as ‘medicine wine’. The various ways in which it is often prescribed to someone are for example, a woman after childbirth, an old man having back problems or someone who needs help with digestion. Ruou Thuoc is interesting to say the least as it often includes not only fruits and spices but also many types of animals like snakes, geckos and seahorses. If you are able to try just a small amount of this type of rice wine, it will definitely be a story to tell for years to come.