Season Two Premieres Monday, September 28 At 10:00 P.M. ET/PT
Host Jack Maxwell Kicks Off New Season with Eye-Opening Journey Through Greece, Discovering its Age-old Traditions, Resilient People and Distinct Spirits
JACK MAXWELL IS BACK IN SEARCH OF THE WORLD’S MOST INTERESTING DRINKS
Travel Channel’s global nomad, Jack Maxwell, is back for another round of searching for the world’s most interesting beverages and the people who drink them in the second season of “Booze Traveler,” premiering on Monday, September 28 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT. In 16 all-new, hour-long episodes, Maxwell embarks on a journey crisscrossing the map to taste homemade liquors, fresh brewed beer and handcrafted cocktails in diverse locations including Argentina, Finland, Guatemala, Hawaii, Hungary, India, New Zealand, the Philippines, Sicily, Tanzania and Texas.
In Travel Channel’s “Booze Traveler,” Maxwell ventures the globe to not only get a taste of a country’s alcohol, but to quench his curiosity about what people drink, why they drink it and the stories they tell when they do. At each stop, he connects with locals, immerses himself in regional activities, learns about the country’s unique relationship with liquor and sometimes even participates in the alcohol-making process.
“It’s fascinating how a simple drink can bring people together,” says Maxwell. “It gives us a chance to learn from one another, to listen to each other’s stories and open our eyes to the world around us. We discover that we have much more in common than we thought – culturally and socially.”
In the season premiere of “Booze Traveler,” Maxwell steps back into ancient history as he explores Greece, a nation that’s using its traditions to help navigate itself through an uncertain time. He begins in the remote mountain town of Asi Gonia on the island of Crete, where nearly 30,000 sheep are herded to be blessed during the Festival of Saint George. While there, Maxwell samples homemade tsipouro, a traditional refreshment of distilled pomace liquor flavored by anise, and retsina, a local white wine flavored with pine sap dating back 2000 years ago. Next stop, the coastal town of Malia, where he crashes an ouzo-fueled bachelor party and partakes in the traditional custom of smashing plates, drinks rakomelo (raki and honey) with the bride and her parents and witnesses the most intimate part of the wedding preparation – krevati, a bed-making ceremony to bring good luck and fertility to the new couple.
In the capital city of Athens, Maxwell visits a restaurant that revives ancient food, drink and tradition from 5th century BC – complete with Ancient Greek clothes, feet washing and a symposium. He enjoys enormelo (traditional honey wine and a close cousin of mead) and is given the honor of raising the ceremonial ram head mug and leading a toast. The following day, Maxwell becomes one of the first Americans to try yamas, a new drink made by three innovative Athenians that combines carbonation and the three classic Greek liquors – ouzo, tsipouro and mastika. He learns how these Greeks are trying to innovate the old traditions in order to keep moving forward amidst the economic crisis affecting the country. Maxwell’s Greek exploration isn’t complete without a visit to the crescent-shaped island of Chios where he discovers its local mastic trees, the producer of the pure mastic gum and mastika liqueur, and learns a new toast – “Pieto na misi piet,” which means, “Drink it before it drinks you!”
Other Episodes in Season Two includes:
“Finland: Sisu, Sauna, And The Midnight Sun”: Host Jack Maxwell learns that once booze starts flowing, the famously reserved and introverted Finns let their inner Vikings roar to life. Whether he’s shredding with the air guitar champion of the world, herding reindeer in Lapland, slogging through a game of swamp soccer or broiling in a mobile sauna with three naked Finns, he is determined to find the method to Finland’s drinking madness. He’ll taste lonkero, the gin and juice cocktail in a can invented in the 1950s by the government to fuel up athletes; terva snapsi, a liqueur made of pine tar; isokari sours flavored with sea buckthorn, a cross between cranberry juice and battery acid, but packed with Vitamin C; and laku, a do-it-yourself mix of vodka, licorice and salt.
“Hungary: Aliens, Soviets, and Gypsies”: Maxwell jumpstarts his journey through Hungary with shots of pálinka, a typical rural wake up call of 100-proof homemade fruit brandy. He drives to Budapest’s Jewish Quarter where ruin pubs – abandoned buildings transformed into trendy pubs and bars – serve him keseru mez, a triple-hopped, unfiltered and unpasteurized lager, and aurora borealis, a vodka mixed with raspberry syrup that is carbonated. Maxwell also uncovers Hungary’s best-kept liquor secret: zwack unicum, a herbal liqueur that uses 40 herbs and spices, a little 80- proof alcohol and was a secret remedy for Emperor Joseph II. Continue reading