Monthly Archives: January 2014

The Estonian Song and Dance Festival Continues to Inspire

On this particular day in Tallinn, Estonia on July 1999 I decided to do a DIY renovation in one of my apartments and not attend the Estonian Song and Dance Festival. I planned to rent out the apartment in the fall and was looking forward to customizing the improvements in what had once been my maternal grandfather’s building. The day was hot and my project  was to remove old wallpaper. It peeled off easily enough as long as I kept dousing it with generous jets of water with my sprayer before digging in with the scraper.

Decades of Stories Revealed

Decades of Stories Revealed

Vana Tallinn and the Era of Stagnation

Centuries ago monasteries were the main hub of scientific experimentation. Not surprisingly the industrious monks concocted potent herbal elixirs where spices and herbs soaked in alcohol created delightful infusions and distillations, such as Vana Tallinn.

Monk Distilling an Invaluable Elixir

Monk Distilling an Invaluable Elixir

Intended for medicinal purposes such as easing childbirth, indigestion or purportedly extending one’s life, the potions were sold initially to the nearby villagers.

These liqueurs were considered so tasty they eventually found their way to fine dining tables such as that of Catherine De Medici, wife of Henry II of France, who introduced the culture of liqueur drinking to the French Court.