liquorice/licorice [noun] [de drop, <no plural>] [‘drop‘]
"Drop" is very popular in the Netherlands. Children as well as adults eat a lot of it. In nearly every Dutch home, or car for that matter, there’s a bag of "drop" somewhere. You can buy it almost everywhere: in the supermarket, at the drugstore, at petrol/gas stations etc. Outside the Netherlands – especially in the more southern European countries – "drop" is not very common, because the people expect candy to be sweet, with nice colors. Black and salty is not really appreciated, although sweet Dutch "drop" also exists. "Drop" is therefore mainly produced in the Netherlands.
– "Hou je van zoete drop, of meer van zoute drop?"
("Do you like sweet liquorice, or do you like salty liquorice more?")
– "Er zijn te veel soorten drop te koop; het is om gek van te worden!"
("Too many kinds of "drop" are for sale; this drives one crazy!" Lit. "… it is to become crazy of!")
– "Wil je een mintje?" – "Nee, doe maar een dropje."
("Would you like a mint?" – "No, I’ll have a piece of liquorice." Note the informal usage of "doe maar", it translates to something like "I’ll have" in this case, but can also mean "(just) do it" or "give it a go" etc. It was also the name of a very popular Dutch eighties band.)
– "Pas op, want drop eten kan verslavend zijn!!"
("Be careful, because eating "drop" can be addictive!")
Sometimes you will see a commercial by Venco on Dutch television. Everytime the joke is that some kind of foreigner is amazed by the Dutch craving for – obviously – Venco drop. Here is an example of such a commercial.
Minties (mint sweets) are called “dropsy” (plural form) in Polish. This may have been a Dutch or German language influence.
I don’t know if they’re still on the market, but they were one of the few sweet attractions available to children in the post-WWII Poland under communist rule.
I particularly liked the “extra strong” version 🙂
Zwarte drop is te sterk voor mijn Chinese smaak, maar ik wil gewoon wat dropjes terug brengen zeg maar voor een speciaal “show-off”.
In July, I took a large bag of varieties of drop to the U.S. for my old colleagues. I expect to find the bowl on the table still full when I return in a few weeks!