“The Original Elixir of Life – Mamajuana”


For the alcohol-consuming world, it is almost inevitable that enhanced sexual desires follow the ingestion of multiple cocktails. While this is true for your standard vodka tonic, one specialty drink native to the Dominican Republic is known for its effects on your sex drive: Mamajuana.

Historically, the mamajuana drink dates back over 800 years and was originally found in the Caribbean region, known at that time as Hispanola. The Taino Indians were the first to experiment with this potent concoction. While it is now widely served in the form of liquor, mamajuana was originally ingested in the form of an herbal tea. The Tainos thought that boiling the herbs extracted their medicinal qualities. They believed that the purpose of the beverage was to enhance general wellbeing and vitality, and still today it is thought that “Whatever tortures you – Mamajuana takes care of it.” Mamajuana is still drunk as a tea which supposedly has all of the same effects as the liquor form, just without the alcohol and calories.

Since its conception, the beverage has taken on mythical status in the Dominican Republic due to its “cure-all” reputation, though today it has one particular and widespread purpose: to help men get it up. Hailed by native Dominicans as the “Baby Maker,” it is a widely held belief that the consumption of mamajuana directly contributes to sex drive.

There is no singular way to make this drink because different recipes produce different results. While some variations of Mamajuana are designed to stimulate fertility in women or cure the flu, the most popular version is the recipe geared toward prompting sexual desire in women and enhancing sexual performance in men, for obvious reasons. In recipes geared toward men who desire added potency, the most popular reason for consuming mamajuana, the most coveted ingredient is the penis of a sea turtle. Considered an aphrodisiac without rival, this liquid love is usually served in shot form at room temperature. Though this is the most common way to consume mamajuana, it can also be served on the rocks, with cola, or as an uplifting side order to the casual beer.

Mamajuana is a delicious concoction composed of bottled tree bark, herbs, spices, and roots that ferment in honey, red wine, and genuine Dominican rum for a period of at least two or three days. While it is only necessary to marinate for a couple of days, the general rule of thumb still applies; the longer it sits, the better it is. Mamajuana can be made with either dark rum, creating a dark red, wine-like color, or with light rum, giving the concoction more of a golden hue. Though the list of ingredients is common knowledge, the original recipe and its carefully selected mix of components is a jealously guarded native secret. The types of herbs used are unique to certain islands and, like the Coca Cola product, are only known to certain individuals who make mamajuana. The Don Ramon Mamajuana family is one clan dedicated to the production of the mythical drink. They claim to have the original version that boasts being the only form of Mamajuana with 19 herbs and spices – other versions only have up to 7. While the exact ingredients will remain a mystery to the outside world, what is certain is that its purpose is to spread the love.

With the standard island memento taking the form of a bottle of tear-inducing, throat burning native liquor, Mamajuana puts a far more enticing spin on the typical souvenir. This beverage is renowned for both its mythical power as well as its delicious and distinct flavor. Perhaps what makes a bottle of this ‘liquid Viagra’ so special is the fact that it is only found in the Dominican Republic and one bottle can be used to create upward of forty batches, allowing for continued drinking and sexual pleasure. While the juice is only produced in the Dominican Republic, it can be imported in the U.S. and should not be passed up if the opportunity arises. Though it looks like bark in a bottle (and in fact it is…at first), Mamajuana gives just the right taste of the islands and, if you’re lucky, enables you to get just the right taste of someone else.



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