Mamajuana from the Dominican Republic

Rumored to have medicinal as well as aphrodisiac properties, we set out to find out more about Mamajuana during our recent visit to the Dominican Republic. We had actually heard, and even sampled Mamajuana at the Mt. Pellier Domino Club on St. Croix, where Norma is famous for her batches of Mamajuana, but apparently it actually originated from the Taino Indians in the Dominican Republic and is considered a native drink of the DR. Regardless, it is widely available in the DR and we sampled a good amount of it while there – for research purposes, of course…

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Mamajuana is pronounced mama-whan-a, not mama-joo-whan-a as we were corrected numerous times! This powerful elixir is a mixture of red wine, honey and rum that is soaked in a bottle with twigs, bark, leaves and herbs. Different spices are sometimes used as well. Each bottle tastes a bit different, depending on the mixture and the amount of time spent soaking together.

Mamajuana is commonly consumed as a shot, but we also sampled several beverages made with Mamajuana, such as a Mamajuana Mojito and a Motokoncho (Mamajuana, DR Rum, vodka and cherries). Many Dominican Republic natives believe Mamajuana can cure many ailments, from the common cold and flu to more serious conditions and is widely touted as an aphrodisiac. We were told it was probably best to sample Mamajuana at our resort or a restaurant and not just a roadside stand to be safe.

We brought a bottle back with us, to enjoy a little more of the taste of the DR at home and to try to create some Mamjuana of our own. With proper care, the twigs, herbs and leaves found in the bottle can be re-used for a number of years to create more batches of Mamjuana.

Just wish we could have brought a little of this back with us as well…

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Beautiful beach in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

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  1. Kim L. Conrad says:

    How do I get a Bottle of Mamajuana here in Oregon?

    • Kim, There may be be ways to order it online – just do a web search on Mamajuana. I’ve never looked for it in retail liquor shops, but you could also try asking your local liquor distributor if he can order it. Good luck!