Rīga -  Black Balsam


It was June and my small room on the third floor of a small hotel in the old town of Riga offered a view down into a courtyard, in which outdoor tables were inviting people to linger. The old town is a wonderful maze of streets and old hanseatic buildings beautifully renovated. It was time to join the people in the streets and as the sun is shining in summer until Midnight I had plenty of time to enjoy the nice weather. To have a view over the town I was looking for a nice terrace up level. For this Albert Hotel comes highly recommended. The walk there took me first through the Hanseatic old town, then over Bastejkalna park into the Art-Nouveau district with Elizabeth Street in its centre right up the Roof Top Lounge of the fancy hotel. Hip youngsters were sipping cocktails and of course it was time for the famous Black Riga cocktail, which basis is Black Balsam a herb liquor made of a secret recipe since the middle ages. The cocktail should stimulate the imagination and when I enjoyed the view over Riga in full daylight after already ten in the evening I didn’t know, if this surreal wonderful feeling was coming from the cocktail or from the reality. It didn´t matter at the moment, as it was time for a chat and some more drinks with some lovely locals on the next table.