Spirits distilled from the fermented juice, mash or wine of fruit or from its residue at less than 95% alcohol by volume (190 proof) having the taste, aroma and characteristics generally attributed to brandy and bottled at not less than 40% alcohol by volume (80 proof). These products are also called eau de vie which translates to "water of life". Initially wine was distilled as a preservation method and as a way to make it easier for merchants to transport. It is also thought that wine was originally distilled to lessen the tax which was assessed by volume.
A fruit brandy made from damson plums, often referred to as plum brandy. Slivovitz is produced in Central and Eastern Europe. During the production process, the plums and their ground kernels are crushed and pressed; yeast, starch, and sugar may be added to the juice. The mixture is then allowed to ferment. There may be one or more distillation stages, depending on the desired final product or region of production, and aging is common to enhance the distillate's finer flavors.