I love a good story when it comes to being a tourist. There are thousand no wait, there are millions of statues around the world. Some of them are super cool and some of them are “just” statues. In the city center of Gdansk, there is a fountain with a statue of Neptune. At first, this was “just” a statue but after hearing its story it’s worth its own post!
Fountain of Neptune, Gdansk
For the Polish people, this is the meeting place. Everybody knows where the fountain is and it has become a local meeting point. That also makes this fountain and statue very hard to photograph because there is always loads of people here. So if you want to take the perfect picture of the statue, make sure to be here super early and you might be able to get it without crowds of people.
So let’s start with the statue in the fountain. There is a fun thing to notice while looking at Neptune…
Neptune Statue in Gdansk
If you take a close look at what’s between Neptune’s legs you might think that it’s a leaf. But take a closer look. That is not a leaf but the tale of one of the horses. We did agree that it looked like some sort of leaf but now you know. But that is not the funniest thing about the tail. If you look at the tail again (yes between Neptune’s legs) you will see that the tail is not quite the same color as the rest of the statue. The tail is darker than the rest. There actually is an explanation for that. The reason is that the tail gets stolen quite often. I bet you that a lot of people want to either take a souvenir with them home or more likely… to see what’s underneath!
Goldwasser in Gdansk
You haven’t been to Paris until you have seen the Eiffel tower. You haven’t been in London without seeing Big Ben. And you haven’t been to Gdansk until you have tried Goldwasser. So what is it? It’s alcohol with gold flakes in it. It looks great. So what about the taste? The alcohol can be dated back until 1598 so this is no new flavor of vodka. There are over 20 herbs and roots put into the alcohol. Some of them are cardamom, coriander, juniper, cinnamon, wild orange, lavender, cloves and thyme. And to finish it off there is 23 karat gold leaves added for luck (and a beautiful look). According to us, it tasted a lot of anise and almost like Sambuca but in a more alcoholic way. And a little like Ouzo. You either like it or not. We loved it!
How to drink Goldwasser
This is served ice cold in a shot glass. However, you are supposed to wait with the shot until the gold sinks to the middle of the glass. Then the temperature is the right one and you are good to go. The shot looks incredible, so much that Smirnoff added gold flakes into one of their bottles as well. But be aware that Smirnoff is not Goldwasser and does not have the same taste.
The myth of the Goldwasser
So there are two different tails about the Goldwasser. The first one is that Neptune got mad because people were throwing coins into the fountain. Finally, he got enough and launched his trident into the water, shattering all the coins into million pieces. That’s the reason why you will find gold flakes in your Goldwasser. The other story is that this was Neptunes way of thanking the people that threw coins into the fountain. He turned the water in the fountain into Goldwasser – an alcoholic beverage with gold flakes. One thing’s for sure… Every 100 years Neptune turn the water in the fountain into Goldwasser. The problem is that no one knows when that will happen 😋!