One of the most important topics for any tourist. Montenegro alcoholic drinks are Vranac wine made from Balkan grapes, cheap beer, and a huge variety of rakija, distilled from almost any berry or fruit. Alcohol here is affordable, with a vast selection in all stores and no restrictions. It’s the kind of place where anyone who enjoys a drink will feel at home, yet throughout your entire stay, you won’t encounter a single drunken Montenegrin on the streets.

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This section in any store is solely dedicated to Vranac and Krstač wines

Montenegro alcoholic drinks: general points

Montenegrins are a nation that enjoys a drink, but they know how to do it right. It’s completely normal here to have two glasses of wine or 50 grams of rakija for lunch and then go back to work. They understand moderation, and you won’t find a drunken Montenegrin on the streets. It’s beneath their dignity to stroll drunk around the streets where neighbors or acquaintances might see.

Interesting Facts:

We travel extensively in the country, and when we check into private apartments, the host almost always offers a glass of cold water or 50 grams of welcome rakija for “Dobro došli” (literally means Welcome).

Of course, you can decline, no one take offense. Moreover, they never pour more than one shot – they know their limits, still have to work 🙂

Montenegro Alcoholic beverages are

sold without any restrictions: everywhere, in all stores and cafes, at any time (according to store hours). Naturally, alcohol is sold only to persons 18 years and older.

Interesting to know:

Almost 20% of the population in Montenegro is Muslim. In the article about the country’s religion, you’ll learn how the three main religions of Montenegro coexist, what tourists can expect from Muslim neighborhoods. You will also learn about alcoholic beverages in different religions.

In short, such Montenegro alcoholic drinks as Vranac wine and homemade rakija are as much national symbols of the country as Ostrog Monastery or Sveti Stefan Island

Montenegro is not about alcoholism but about knowing how to drink in moderation and enjoy life.

All about wines of Montenegro: Vranac and Krstač

Calling Montenegro a wine country is not an exaggeration. Any country you know that produces a lot of wine: France, Italy, South Africa, Chile, and so on, Montenegro stands head and shoulders above them in winemaking expertise and traditions.

What you need to know about Montenegrin wine:

  • The country offers a huge selection of imported wines from around the world at affordable prices.
  • Almost every household makes its own homemade wine. They make it from any grapes, even the popular Isabella.
  • Often, even in taverns and small restaurants, you can order homemade wine for dinner. The owner makes it themselves.

Interesting to know:

In Montenegro, there are two wine brands that are national symbols and pride. These are Vranac and Krstač. Let me briefly tell you about them.
what wine to try in montenegro
By the way, Montenegro doesn’t just grow grapes for Vranac and Krstač wines. They also have popular varieties like Sauvignon and more.

Montenegrin Vranac

Vranac is a dry red wine (very dry) made from Balkan Vranac grapes. The word “Vranac” in Serbian means black, very dark red, almost black. Hence, the clusters of ripe grapes and the wine itself are almost black.

  • This grape variety grows throughout the Balkans, and Vranac wine is also produced in several neighboring countries, not just Montenegro.
  • Outside the Balkan Peninsula, this grape doesn’t grow, and Vranac isn’t made.
  • It’s sold in absolutely every store.
  • There are three types of Vranac specifically from Montenegrin grapes
    • Vranac (aged 1 year) – sold in 1-liter bottles. Price per bottle is 3-4 euros.
    • Vranac Pro Corde (premium wine, aged for 4 years) – only sold in 0.75-liter bottles. Price per bottle is 6-8 euros.
    • There’s also Vranac Reserve, but it’s hard to find in stores. Price per bottle starts from 15 euros.
Montenegrin wines
The best wines of Montenegro: the 1st, 3rd, and 4th bottles – all types of Vranac available, in order of increasing price.

Vranac and Vranac Pro Corde are available in any store. I recommend trying both. The difference is remarkable. I’m no wine sommelier, but the difference in taste and aroma is significant.


Krstač is a white dry wine (slightly sweet) made from an ancient variety of white grapes called Krstac. This grape grows only on the slopes of the mountains in Serbia and Montenegro; indeed, wine is produced only here. Moreover, it doesn’t grow everywhere; in very limited areas, in other parts of the country, and even the world, the vine doesn’t thrive, or the grapes don’t ripen to the right quality..

  • This wine is produced under the following names: Beli Krstac, Biela Krata, Biela Loza, Biela Vinogradarska, Bieli Krstac, Krata Biela, Krsta Biela, Krstac Bieli – all these are classic Krstac
  • There are no varieties in terms of aging like with Vranac.
  • The price for a 1-liter bottle of Krstac in stores is 3-4 euros.
  • The name Krstac translates to “cross.” The bunch of Krstac grapes resembles a cross.
vranac montenegro and krstac
Personally, I find Krstac wine less dry, with a slightly sweeter taste compared to Vranac.

Fruit wines of Montenegro

I want to highlight separately the fruit wines of Montenegro. Of course, it’s not fair to call this wine, but they are quite popular in Montenegro, and you can buy such wines in every store:

  • Sold in 0.75-liter bottles
  • Alcohol content is 4-5%. It resembles more of a sweet, fruity juice.
  • Made from any berries. The production technology is similar to making liquor: alcohol, sugar, berries, and all of this is infused for 2-3 months.
  • The price for a bottle is 5-6 euros.
  • I really like to have a glass of this with dinner. It doesn’t even make you tipsy.
  • There are varieties made from cherries, plums, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and even apricots.
Montenegro drinks
I particularly enjoy wine made from blackberries.

Spirits in Montenegro: rakia, Pelinkovac, Gorki list

The queen of all strong drinks in the Balkans is rakija. In simple terms, it’s grape vodka. This drink has been around for thousands of years and is a symbol of every country on the Balkan Peninsula, and Montenegro is no exception.

Rakija is made in absolutely every home. While homemade distillation is prohibited by law in our country, here it’s a tradition of the ancestors, and it should be respected. Here are a few facts about rakija:

  • The standard rakija in Montenegro is 45%.
  • It’s not a cheap drink; a 0.5-liter bottle in stores starts from 9 euros, and even then, you need to search for such a price. Vodka in our country is much cheaper.
  • You’ll be offered rakija in many places in Montenegro.
  • Rakija has varieties depending on the raw material from which it’s distilled:
    • Classic rakija is made from grapes, it can also be called “Lozovača”.
    • Slivovica – made from plums.
    • Kruškovača or krushova – from pears.
    • Medovača or medena – with honey
    • Orahovača – made from walnuts.
    • Travarica or bilkova – with herbs
    • And so on, there are many types and varieties; they even distill it from peas, but that’s just for experimentation.
spirits in montenegro rakia
You can find various types of rakija in any store. But the bottle size is usually 1 liter.

Personally, I can’t stand Balkan rakija. When I drink it, which is very rare, my eyes pop out of my head. It’s so strong. But I’m not a fan of strong drinks. For me, rakija is just smelly moonshine.

But strong Montenegro alcoholic drinks are not only rakia. There are also several types of local and national drinks. I recommend trying them all for enthusiasts. Everyone has different tastes, maybe you’ll find your perfect drink.

In Montenegro, two herbal liqueurs are popular. You can add them to tea, drink them as medicine for preventive purposes, or just enjoy them. Both are made from over 40 herbs. Moreover, each has a different composition of herbs, so the taste also differs.

  • Gorki list (literally translated as Bitter Leaf). Strength from 28 to 35%. Price per liter is around 16 euros. There’s only one manufacturer, and the bottle design can vary as seen in the photo below.
  • Pelinkovac. Strength from 28 to 32%. Price per liter starts from 12 euros. There are over 10 manufacturers of this herbal infusion. The four bottles on the right in the photo below are all Pelinkovac.
spirits of montenegro Gorki list and pelinkovac
Alcohol in Montenegro: Pelinkovac is somewhat reminiscent of the well-known Jägermeister.

Montenegrin beer

Beer is very popular here. This alcohol in Montenegro is cheap, accessible, and sold in large quantities everywhere. But to call Montenegro a country with deep beer traditions would be incorrect. Montenegro is about wine and rakija, not beer.

Here’s what you need to know about Montenegrin beer:

  • There’s only one beer producer in the country – Niksicko.
  • They brew a pale lager, you can still find a dark one. That’s all. Don’t expect a variety of local products from local producers.
  • All other beer in the country is imported. There are all global producers: Carlsberg, Heineken, and so on.
  • I recommend trying the beer from neighboring countries here; it’s presented in a wide assortment: Serbian beer, from Kosovo, Bosnian beer, Croatian beer, and you can even find Albanian beer.
  • The standard price for a 0.5-liter can of beer (Montenegrin or Serbian) is 0.6 euros.
Montenegrin beer niksicko
The only Montenegrin beer is Niksicko.

It’s important to know:

In Montenegro, you won’t find beer, milk, butter, or any products in containers with volumes like 0.45 liters or 0.42 liters, or even 0.4 liters. This is prohibited by law here. There are only 0.5-liter and 1-liter options. It’s all fair. If someone did the same in our country, I would vote for them in the next elections 🙂 Details about shopping in Montenegro and what a tourist needs to know.

How a tourist can buy bottled beer in Montenegro

It’s an interesting question, and the answer is – you can’t :).

When you go to the store, you’ll see a wide selection of beer both in glass and cans. Glass bottles are cheaper on average by 0.1-0.15 euros. It’s a good saving, for people like me who drink about 5 bottles of beer a day on vacation.

But if you buy beer in glass bottles, they’ll take it away from you at the cash register and won’t sell it to you. There’s no concept of a deposit for the bottle here.


The only way to buy beer in glass bottles in Montenegro is to come to the store already with your empty bottles and place them in a crate at the checkout during payment. Where to get these first bottles, nobody knows; apparently, you have to win them in an honest fight on the street (i’m joking).
beer in montenegro prices
A typical beer section in any store in Montenegro. There’s plenty of bottled beer, but it’s not accessible to tourists.

By the way, empty bottles disappear quickly on the streets. Even locals don’t know where they get them. They all say that they’ve had the bottles for a long time, since the days when beer in glass was freely sold. Now they simply exchange a crate of empty bottles at the store for a crate of full ones each time.

Of course, you can take a bottle from a bar. After you’ve finished your 2 euro beer, carefully take the bottle with you :). But one isn’t enough; you need about 5, and walking with them to the store isn’t very convenient—they’re heavy and clink. So tourists don’t bother and buy beer only in cans, even though it’s a bit more expensive.

Read about other pros and cons of Montenegro at the link.

In conclusion, alcohol in Montenegro is definitely a big plus for tourists on vacation. It’s cheap, with a huge variety to suit every taste and preference. Remember, the locals know their limits, so you should too. Montenegrin wines, Montenegrin beer, and just alcohol in Montenegro are present at every table at all celebrations, festivities, and dinners.

Resources to help you plan your dream trip to Montenegro

  • Aviasales – Cheap Flights and best deals.
  • Car rental in Montenegro:
    • DiscoverCars – a large international platform.
    • LocalRent – works with local rental companies. Leader in car rental in Montenegro.
  • Hotels and apartments all over the country:
    • Hotellook compares the prices among dozens of other booking services and offer the best price
    • Booking – the most popular booking platform
    • Agoda – even more accommodation options in Montenegro
  • Tours, excursions and activities (including extreme ones):
    • GetYourGuide – more than 430 tours
    • Viator – 780+ excursions and activities throughout the country
  • Comprehensive travel insurance: EKTA
  • Internet and Calls:
  • Taxi and airport transfers: Intui.Travel