16 Things You Didn’t Know About Jägermeister

Despite its recent boom in popularity, Jägermeister enjoyed an amazingly long and storied history before everybody decided to drop the bomb -- here are 16 knowledge shots you probably didn’t know...

1. It was invented in a vinegar factory

Curt Mast came up with Jäger’s original recipe in 1935, but it was 20 years before that he took over his Father’s vinegar factory in Wolfenbüttel, Germany. Mast stopped producing the acidic stuff to focus entirely on manufacturing spirits, eventually creating the concoction we know and love today. 

2. ... and they still use the same, extraordinarily complicated recipe

The mixture of 56 (!) herbs, including citrus peel, licorice, and ginseng, has never changed in the whole 79 years. In fact, the exact ingredients are a company secret.

Jager factory

3. It's still made in Wolfenbüttel

Jägermeister’s production outgrew the old vinegar factory back in 1958. There are now three bottling plants in total, and just recently the company built a new ultra-modern head office

4. Wolfenbüttel is quite the tourist attraction thanks to them... there's even a Jägermeister hotel

For a town of only about 50,000 people, Wolfenbüttel gets a lot of traffic all thanks to the Jägermeister fame. Visitors come to tour the factory and headquarters, and yes, there’s even a Jägermeister Guesthouse

5. It takes over a year to make

Before it reaches the bottle, Jägermeister goes through quite a lengthy process. The ingredients are filtered and stored in oak barrels for 365 days. Then there’s a series of 383 quality checks, including another round of filtering with sugar, caramel, alcohol, and water.

Flickr/Garret Nuzzo-Jones

6. The Germans call it "liver glue"

While many of us know Jägermeister by way of the nightclub shot glass, it was actually invented as a digestif. In Germany, it’s still popular for an after-dinner sip, that’s why it’s lovingly known as “leberkleister”. 

7. Jägermeister heals! (Disclaimer: not medically proven.)

Like many herbal liqueurs, Jägermeister was originally used medicinally, and even today people swear by its healing properties for easing flu symptoms from cough to sore throats. 

8. No, it doesn’t contain deer or elk blood

Contrary to urban legend, vital fluids are not among the 56 ingredients.


9. The bottle was invented by breaking a lot of glass

Curt Mast “perfected” Jägermeister’s famous green bottle by dropping bottles one after the other onto his kitchen floor. The one that exists today proved to be the most reliable. 

10. It's a summer drink

Or at least, that's the inherent implication of Jägermeister Spice; a “winter edition” of the herbal liquor made with the same 56 ingredients, but with an emphasis on cinnamon and vanilla and a lower alcohol level.

Jager logo
Flickr/Todd Kravos

11. The logo has a badass story

It’s inspired by a pair of patron saints -- hunters who converted to Christianity after seeing the vision of a crucifix appearing between a stag’s antlers -- the first of which was a Roman general who then, apparently had his newfound faith tested to the limit. His wife was kidnapped, his wealth stole, his servants died, and his children were taken away by a wolf and a lion -- but he held firm, and totally got them all back! Except the servants. 

12. Germans use it in their insect traps

Wasps and flies love Jägermeister too! 

13. It’s awesome to cook with

Believe it or not, Jägermeister makes flavorful chicken wing sauce, marinade, and even fudgy brownies. For a little inspiration, check out Chef Chris Santos' five-course, Jäger-infused dinner.

Jager Balloon
Flickr/La Marga

14. Jägermeister is more popular than ever in the last 10 years

Jägermeister’s sales have seriously spiked in this decade. It’s sold in 80 countries, with 80% of sales coming from outside Germany, but Jäg’s especially popular in the US where sales have quadrupled in recent years. 

15. It's the world's best-selling liqueur brand

Yet, they only have 530 employees!

jagerbomb glass

16. This glass was made specifically for it...

... and a certain bovine-themed, wing-giving energy drink.

Sign up here for our daily Berlin email and be the first to get all the food/drink/fun in town.