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7th November 2005, 13:36
Salamander brandy from Slovenia.

Forget absinthe and the worm-in-the-bottle tequila, the drink that will light the fuse at any Christmas party is illicit salamander brandy.

Known to some as "randy brandy", the drink produces a powerful erotic effect that is indiscriminate in its target. After a few glasses anything in the natural world can become sexually attractive, apparently.

The X-factor in the cocktail is the poisonous mucus produced by a live salamander. As a result, production of the brandy has always been a clandestine affair.

The Slovenian tourist board certainly has not heard of it, but the secrecy of the brandy is half the fun.

I had to go through a chain of whispered contacts and endless hours in smoke-filled taverns in Skofja Loka, 25 miles north-west of Ljubljana, before finding the illegal aphrodisiac.

However, this witch's brew does not come with any government warnings, so you have only yourself to blame if you wake up stark-naked and hugging a pine tree, with a reptilian hangover and no memory of how you got there.

Source: The Daily Telegraph, Travel Section
November 5th 2005.
Copyright of Telegraph Group Limited 2005.

7th November 2005, 14:57
wow sounds interesting, i have a friend from Slovenia, i'll ask him to send over a few bottles http://www.caudata.org/forum/clipart/lol.gif

mind you, with the number of salamandra you have Mike, why go all the way to Slovenia!

7th November 2005, 17:30
Will it work on my kaiseri Mike? http://www.caudata.org/forum/clipart/kiss.gif

7th November 2005, 22:27
Possibly Alan, if not you can always fall back on your Melanophryniscus or Dendrobatids.

7th November 2005, 22:54
Bufonids would be a better bet. I got a bit of toxin in Ecuador from a D. sylvaticus and it wasn't the most enjoyable experience. My thumb (which had a cut) was swollen and in pain for a few days.

7th November 2005, 23:16
With maybe just a dash of good ol' taricha-toxin for flavor.

No one mentioned the 'reptilian' hangover http://www.caudata.org/forum/clipart/dizzy.gif

7th November 2005, 23:42
Would "toad in the hole" make a good meal to accompany the brew?

8th November 2005, 00:47
As an afterthought I suppose I should add "Toad in the hole" was named because they used to use toad as an ingredient in beef and pork sausages for its beneficial content.
Though they did not mention what the beneficial content was, unless of course it was the only actual part that was meat and not gristle and bone.

8th November 2005, 09:18
Jeff- where did you hear this suggestion for the origin of the phrase? It sounds a bit like a urban myth to me, but I'd love to be proved wrong...

8th November 2005, 10:28
I'll check it with a Slovenian herpetologist...it sounds like Urban myth to me as well.

8th November 2005, 11:24
The article did show an image of the pickled Salamandra:


8th November 2005, 14:00
ahh the salamander is killed...

8th November 2005, 14:20
Seems a bit wasteful when one could fairly easily harvest the secretions. Perhaps pickling the animal is all a part of the spell required when making the junk, lol.

8th November 2005, 17:45
I cannot at this moment find the source I recently came across mentioning the use of toads in sausages. I first read about this over 20 years ago in an old book in the library, one which also contained many references to old "folk cures".

I will keep looking till I find (hopefully) the reference I recently saw regarding toads as an ingredient in sausage.

Do you discount all old remedies and beliefs?

How many modern medicines came from folk remedies? While accepting not all of them were effective medicine quite a lot were.

9th November 2005, 09:29
Jeff- I'd be most grateful if you could track that one down.

No, I don't dismiss all folk remedies and beliefs.

10th November 2005, 01:01
Caleb I am continuing to look for the site I found the other week (I might learn not to delete my history daily now
). I am also asking at the library if they have any idea of the book I saw years ago and if it is still in stock.
Though if it is it is probably in the bibliophile now. Though it should still be accessible.

14th November 2005, 08:47
Well, dear friends, sadly this myth seems to be true. They overflow the animal with warm slivowitz (the local brew)and the longer it stays a live, the more poison it gives away, the better the drink gets...

14th November 2005, 13:21
I would suppose then that the alcohol content is fairly high to preserve the animal as well. It's a shame they can't just collect the toxin and put a rubber or plastic salamander in. Perhaps a Salamandra fan can make their own and compete without sacrificing the animals. I know I'm not putting any Cynops in my beer any time soon.

14th November 2005, 14:46
Justin: i believe it's illegal anyway to own/sell this drink.