Krupnik is a traditional sweet alcoholic drink similar to a liqueur, based on grain spirit (usually vodka) and honey, popular in Poland. It was popular in Belarus in the past. Mass-produced versions of Krupnik consist of 40%-50% (80-100 proof) alcohol, but traditional versions will use 80% – 100% grain alcohol as the base. Honey, in particular clover honey, is the main ingredient to add sweetness, as well as up to 50 different herbs. There are many versions and some recipes are passed down through generations. The drink originated on the territories of present-day Belarus, which were at the time part of the larger Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
Krupnik is a distant relative of the medovukha (Russian) or miodówka (Polish), a honey-made spirit popular in all Slavic countries.
Legend has it that the recipe was created by the Benedictine monks at a monastery in Niaśviž (present-day Belarus) which was founded by Mikołaj Krzysztof “Sierotka” Radziwiłł. Known in Poland and Lithuania (includes territories of Belarus) at least since 16th century, it soon became popular among the szlachta of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. There are numerous recipes preserved to our times in countless diaries of the szlachta. Krupnik was also used as a common medicinal disinfectant to Polish soldiers in World War II.