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Sep 9, 2008 11:08 AM

BOUKHA (fig brandy)

Any comments on which Boukha is best to sample? The Tunisian Jewish Bokobsa family apparently have three kinds: (1) Boukha l’Oasis, (2) regular Boukha Bokobsa, and the third (3) Boukha Bokobsa Cuvée Prestige. Can anyone comment on how these compare, and can anyone mention any brands to steer clear of please? TIA.

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  1. Wow, I thought no one knew about this tipple. I've never seen the Cuvee, or the Oasis, even in Belleville, Paris.

    1. I love Boukha Bokobsa! Glad to see that you are interested in it. I didn't know that people outside of the Jewish French North African community knew about it.

      I reccomend you start with the Original, Boukha Bokobsa w/ the white label (see the picture I have attached) it is excellent. It can be served ice cold (stick it in the freezer) after a meal as a digestif. The bottle says you can mix it with apple or pear juice, both are good. I have never had the other two (although I have seen them) but all of my French North African family and friends swear by the regular Boukha. You will find it at many (Jewish) French North African weddings and ceremonies alongside Whiskey, Pastis and Anisette (Phenix, Algerian).

      Try it alongside a slice of Boutargue for the "real Tunisian experience".

      Here is a previous thread in which I recommended it:

      Here is a review of Oasis:



      à la tienne!

      8 Replies
      1. re: Faune

        I have to *find* this elixir first [in NYC] and
        then I can comment accordingly. I am somewhat determined,
        and in part, because of your insightful post. Thank you !

        1. re: Cheese Boy

          You are most welcome and I am glad that I could be of some help. good luck finding it! Let us know what you think after you try some.

          P.S.: try emailing the Boukha Bokobsa website about who is the distributer in the US/NYC.

          "Please contact-us for an extensive list of retailers":


          1. re: Cheese Boy

            Hi Cheese Boy, They have this liqueur at Astor Wines on Lafayette and 4th! I am planning to try some for the holiday.

            Good luck!

            1. re: cheryl.berk

              Yup, know the place, right near Cooper Union, just didn't know they had *any* BOUKHA amongst all their wines. I was waiting for a reply from Bokobsa, but a friendly hound seems to have beaten them to it. Thanks so much for the info. Good luck to you, and cheers!

              1. re: Cheese Boy

                Cheryl.berk & Cheese Boy, don't forget to let us know if you enjoyed it :)

              1. re: Faune

                I have some old empty bottles that I was given in Greece that are imprinted with Bokobsa Freres, Eau de Vie Etoile, Gde Drie de la Soukra. Can you help me to understand what that means? I can find no references on the internet. Thanks!

              2. I am sipping the Boukha right now. I don't taste any hint of fig whatsoever, it's not sweet in any way like some brandys tend to be, and there's no unpleasant aftertaste. The color (and taste) is very much akin to silver tequila IMHO. The smoothness of the Boukha is quite alluring I tell you, and I really feel like I'm drinking tequila, *not* BRANDY at all. The challenge I face now is how do I get the fig taste I'm craving to shine through? I wish I knew.

                1. Aha. Now everything is clear. Boukha is not made from figs we know as "mission" or "calmyrna". Boukha is obtained by the distillation of “figues de Barbarie” (prickly pears) from Tunisia and Turkey. This explains why the taste resembles that of tequila to me I suppose. To taste "figs", I guess I should take some dried calmyrna figs and steep them in the newfound Boukha. That *should* work.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Cheese Boy

                    No, boukha is definitely not made from figues de barbarie -- though that's an interesting idea. The terms "figues" and "figues de barbarie" are not used interchangably here.

                    There's no taste of fig in Boukha because it's just not that good! But your idea to steep the figs in Boukha is a good one. Did that with some fresh figs and it turned out nicely -- the liquor turned a nice, sweet purple-pink. Gotta do that again when the figs are back.

                    1. re: jv75

                      I did a similar thing w/homemade Tuica from a Saxon Village in Romania. It was clear when I got it. After I got home I steeped some fresh plums in it. Turned it a bit purple and rounded it out a bit, not much, just a bit.

                    2. re: Cheese Boy

                      "This explains why the taste resembles that of tequila to me I suppose."
                      You may have had a taste; where did you try this?

                      1. re: MOREKASHA

                        I know Dorit and David Nahmias, their small distillery is just a few minutes from me. I've been there numerous times before they opened, and since. They make some interesting and tasty spirits.

                        1. re: JMF

                          Their story is a great one, Too many "craft" distillers & brewers have such bogus stories. Like the fella who opened up in Brooklyn and said, "I wanted to represent Brooklyn". I'm used to schilling, to bogus claims, but really?

                          1. re: MOREKASHA

                            Which distillery in Brooklyn said, "I wanted to represent Brooklyn".

                            There are 11 distilleries in Brooklyn...

                            1. re: JMF

                              Honestly, I can't remember. This was about 5 years ago. I didn't save the article as I nearly fell on the floor laughing.

                              1. re: MOREKASHA

                                Well, Brooklyn was known for an abundance of distilleries pre-Prohibition. So I actually don't understand the humor.

                                I also don't understand the quote marks around craft, when you mention distilleries. There are a few craft distilleries making bogus claims, but they are easy to debunk. While there are hundreds of craft distilleries who are just that.

                                Now the ones who claim ties to Prohibition and gangsters are always just spouting marketing nonsense. Even the ones with a great, real story, then just take the story into absurdium. (I know, I used to be involved with one that had a great story, but they just kept shoveling the manure along with the truth when it wasn't needed.)

                                1. re: JMF

                                  JMF, I'm very jaded by the use of the word craft. I prefer terms like, small, micro, nano etc. Craft implies (to my mind) an arbitrary definition implying quality etc). As we know, the big boys in Bourbon make some pretty great stuff and to imply (by their exclusion) that they aren't' craft is kinda crazy. Some of the "craft" guys don't mash their own grain, use their own yeast, hell, the vodka guys just redistill tanker loads of spirit. Is that then craft?