Country of origin Netherlands
Introduced17th century
Alcohol by volume 14–20%
Proof (US)28°–40°
FlavourRich, creamy, smooth
IngredientsEgg yolks, aromatic spirits, sugar or honey, brandy, vanilla, cream or condensed milk
Related productsCoquito, Eggnog, Eierpunsch, Kogel mogel, Pisco sour, Ponche crema, Rompope

Advocaat /ˈædvəkɑː/ or advocatenborrel is a traditional Dutch alcoholic beverage made from eggs, sugar, and brandy.[1] The rich and creamy drink has a smooth, custard-like consistency. The typical alcohol content is generally between 14% and 20% ABV. Its contents may be a blend of egg yolks, aromatic spirits, sugar or honey, brandy, vanilla, and sometimes cream (or condensed milk). Notable makers of advocaat include Warninks, Bols, Darna Ovo Liker, DeKuyper (in two varieties), and Verpoorten.[citation needed]


Two theories have been put out on the origins of "advocaat".

According to several makers, such as Verpoorten and Bols, and the Oxford companion to Sugar and Sweets, its origins can be traced back to "abacate", an alcoholic beverage of the indigenous people in Brazil, which was made with avocado. Dutch colonials of northern Brazil introduced this beverage to Europe as "advocat/advocaat". As avocados could not grow in northern Europe, they were replaced with egg yolk, thought to have a similar taste and consistency, and the name derived from the avocado stuck, although the drink no longer contains any.[2][3]

Advocaat [ɑdvoːˈkaːt] is also the Dutch word for 'lawyer' in the sense of 'solicitor'. As the name of the drink, it is short for advocatenborrel, or 'lawyers' drink'. Borrel is Dutch for a small alcoholic beverage (liqueur, brandy, etc. but not beer or wine) consumed slowly during a social gathering or an informal occasion where colleagues meet for light conversation with beer and wine. According to the 1882 edition of the Woordenboek der Nederlandsche taal ('Dictionary of the Dutch Language'), it is zoo genoemd als een goed smeersel voor de keel, en dus bijzonder dienstig geacht voor een advocaat, die in 't openbaar het woord moet voeren" ("so named as a good lubricant for the throat, and thus considered especially useful for a lawyer, who must speak in public").[4]


As early as the 17th century, Europeans discovered in Brazil among tribes in the Amazon region a drink called Abacate composed of avocados. This avocado drink was later said to have been discovered by Dutch sailors in the Antilles and then taken to the Netherlands.

In 1828, J.G. Cooymans started a distillery in downtown 's-Hertogenbosch. There he developed the egg drink "advocaat."[5] In 1876, the Antwerp distiller Eugen Verpoorten established a distillery in Heinsberg near Aachen, Germany, which made an egg liquor (Eierlikör in German) using eggs, sugar, distilled alcohol, and other ingredients.[6][7]

Types and uses

A bottle of advocaat of German origin

Jars and wide mouth bottles of thick advocaat are sold mainly in the Netherlands and Belgium, though may be available in Germany and Austria. Further exports are of a more liquid version.

In particular the original thick variety, i.e. without albumen, is used as a waffle, pancake or poffertjes topping, as an ingredient for ice cream, custards, pastries and similar desserts, or as an apéritif or digestif. The latter, possibly topped with whipped cream and then occasionally sprinkled with a touch of cocoa powder, is served in a very tiny bowl or small glass from which it is eaten by use of a teaspoon. In Belgian restaurants and taverns, it may be a complementary accompaniment to a coffee.

In the export variety both parts of the eggs are used. The best known [citation needed] cocktail using advocaat is the Snowball: a mixture of advocaat, sparkling lemonade and sometimes (although this is not required) lime juice that is often consumed at Christmas time. Another is the Fluffy duck, made with rum. Another advocaat-based beverage is the Bombardino, a drink commonly found in Italian ski resorts, particularly the Italian Alps, made by mixing advocaat, brandy, and whipped cream.[8]

Related drinks

The Polish equivalent, ajerkoniak (German: eier 'eggs' and French: cognac), is based on vodka instead of brandy, despite what the name may suggest.

Rompope of Mexico and sabajón of Colombia are very similar liqueurs based on egg yolk and vanilla. Some varieties have additional flavourings.

See also


  1. ^ Rinsky, Laura Halpin; Glenn Rinsky (2009). The Pastry Chef's Companion: A Comprehensive Resource Guide for the Baking and Pastry Professional. Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons. p. 3. ISBN 978-0-470-00955-0. OCLC 173182689.
  2. ^ "Verpoorten". Verpoorten_history.
  3. ^ "Bythedutch-website".
  4. ^ M. De Vries & L. A. Te Winkel (1882). Woordenboek der Nederlandsche taal. Vol. 1. M. Nijhoff, A.W. Sijthoff, Henri J. Stemberg. p. 827.
  5. ^ Bedrijfsgeschiedenis op website Cooymans. Gearchiveerd op 10 april 2021.
  6. ^ Bedrijfsgeschiedenis op Gearchiveerd op 1 juni 2019.
  7. ^ "Eierlikör tritt seinen Siegeszug in Heinsberg an". Aachener Zeitung. 23 December 2003. Retrieved 26 December 2023. (in German)
  8. ^ "Bombardino-Calimero". 12 Bottle Bar. 9 December 2010. Retrieved 7 February 2012.

Further reading