Zacharonero, was a refreshment popular in Northern Greece, made by mixing 2 tbs sugar (zachari), 1 glass of water (nero) and 1 tbs vinegar. Adding more vinegar (about 3tbs) zacharonero becomes xidonero (xidi = vinegar + nero= water)

Vinegar in drinking water is effective in killing harmful bacteria and in eliminating the fever, thus xidonero had been heavily used as a way to purify the water and as a remedy for dysentery, malaria and typhoid fever.
It was also consumed as a cool, not very refined but very refreshing beverage.

Xidonero was actually close to posca, a drink of vinegar or acidified wine and water that was used by the Roman and Byzantine military troops and lower classes. It might be infused by herbs and sweetened by honey.

The evolution of the beverage industry affected many homemade refreshments. After 1960, zacharonero and xidonero unavoidably lost their way in terms of popularity.



  1. I have to admit that drinking vinegar doesn’t appeal to me at first. But then again, I haven’t tasted it so I should reserve judgment! Is there a particular vinegar that is best to use (or most popular)? I have apple cider, coconut and regular white vinegar (as well as balsamic and sweet rice wine). Would any of these work? My father-in-law is very interested in natural remedies and preventatives – I think he would join me in trying this out!

    One other thing – I recently saw another post about vinegar drinks and many people mentioned the issue of the acidity potentially damaging tooth enamel. Have you heard of this with regard to zacharonero? The suggestion was to us a straw! 😎

  2. Posca, xidonero and zacharonero are normally made with red wine vinegar and are pretty good on a hot day.
    I also believe that vinegar is quite acidic and acid drinks may damage the surface enamel of the teeth over time, so it’s better if you rinse thoroughly or brush your teeth afterwards.

  3. Selba, Papyrus Oxyrhynchensi 1384 is a Christian, Greek medical- magical text of 5th cent. A.D. which gives the following ingredients for a purgative posca:
    cumin, fennel,celery,costus, mastic, coriander, bay berries, nutmeg(?) pennyroyal, leaf (i.e. malabathrum),salt,vinegar.
    I haven’t tried it yet but it looks like a good idea!

  4. Well there’s something to try. Not much different in a way to real lemondade I suppose – with the acid. It certainly saves lives in the third world.

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