Mastiha on the rocks!

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The unique Mastiha is the brand product of Chios. Its multiple uses are constantly increasing. However, since the old days, the Chians used to make a special liqueur flavored with mastic.

The "Chios Mastiha" liqueur is classified among the Greek PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) products. It is produced either by blending mastic oil, alcohol and sugar, or by extracting alcohol from mastic tears and then distilling and mixing with sugar. It is transparent and distinguished by its particular aroma and its qualities as an excellent digestive. A glass of mastiha liqueur can accompany sweets or ice creams on an afternoon call, can perfectly close a nice meal, or give a special flavor to a fruit salad.

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Wandering around Chios Mastiha villages in the autumn

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If you visit the villages of Mastiha (Chios Gum Mastic) at this time of the year in Chios island, Greece, you will come across a familiar image: women mastiha producers, and also men, of all ages are gathered in small groups at the alleys and corners of the village with large traditional sieves full of the recently gathered mastiha. They have already started the long copious process of cleaning the product. The aroma of mastiha fills the narrow village roads at Pyrgi, Mesta, Kalamoti and the rest of the 24 villages of mastiha.  

The first step of cleansing is the “tahtarisma”, that is the sifting of the product in order to separate the mastiha from leaves and soil. The next step is the cleansing in cold water, some even wash it with sea water and then the mastiha is laid out to dry.

After the product has dried, traditionally women take over. Using pointy small knives they clean each and every small piece and granule of mastiha from dirt and soil that may be stuck on it. This is a process that starts now, in the autumn, but depending on the workload and the time they devote to the cleansing, it may go on until spring.

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Click here, to visit the website of the former Prefecture of Chios.

Chios.gr is the official tourism web site for Chios, run by the North Aegean Prefecture, where you'll find information on the main tourist destinations, beaches, as well as activities, events and much more!

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Contact: Regional Unit Of Chios Department of Tourism | Phone numbers: 0030 22713-50514 & 0030 22713-50516 | FAX: 0030 22713-50517 | Emailtourismos@chios.pvaigaiou.gov.gr