Mallorcan sweet, semi-sweet and dry Herbes and Palo are the two main popular drinks on the island. Although today these liqueurs can be found in any bar both drinks were originally used for healing and medicinal purposes by friars.
Mallorcan sweet, semi-sweet and dry Herbes
Mallorcan Herbes is an anisette-flavoured liqueur served cold, at room temperature or with ice and taken as a digestive after a meal. There are three different types:sweet, semi-sweet and dry. This liqueur was originally distilled by friars used for healing and medicinal purpouses but it soon turned into a popular drink.
In the year 2002 the Regulation for the Herbes de Mallorca Geographical Designation was approved, thus protecting this geographical name and defining it as an anisette-flavoured liqueur mainly made with different aromas extracted from local plants like fennel, rosemary, lemon verbena, camomile, lemon balm and orange and lemon trees.
Palo de Mallorca is a spirit obtained by the maceration and/or infusion of cinchona bark and gentian root (gentina lutea), both plants have anti-malarial properties. This drink was originally used to fight off malaria. Later concentrated sugars were added to improve the original bitter taste. In the end its medicinal value was forgotten and it has become a recognized, much appreciated local aperitif. It can be drunk straight, with ice or with soda.
In 1993 the Regulation for the Palo de Mallorca Geographical Designation was approved, thus protecting this geographical name.