Drawing from the book Instant Greek by William Papas 1972. Published by William Papas, Ermioni, Argolis, Greece
Ouzeri for Ouzo and Mezethes
During the hot summer months, ouzo, the popular aperitif is served at most places from sidewalk cafes and squares, bars, and tavernas. The licorice or aniseed-flavored spirit is served in very small portions into which you may add the quantity of water you desire. As the water is added the Ouzo, originally a clear liquid turns cloudy.
Greeks never drink unless they eat as well. Ouzo is served along with “mezethes” similar to the Spanish “tapas”. A typical plate includes four to five delicious smallish portion of Tzadziki (garlic, cucumber, and yogurt), Tiropitta, (tiny fried cheese pie), Olives, salty fish, cheese. bread.
Mezethes plate from a Naxos taverna
is by far Greece’s most iconic alcoholic beverage. It’s a sweet, strong alcoholic drink similar to a liqueur, which is made from the by-products of grapes after they’ve been used for wine-making (mainly the skins and stems). It’s then distilled into a high-proof alcoholic beverage that’s flavoured primarily with anise, which gives it a special licorice taste.
Drinking Ouzo in Greece is a cultural ritual that has its own special time and place, usually in the late afternoon or early evening, and always accompanied by tidbits. Some say drinking Ouzo is a form of art, while others consider it a lifestyle.
Here is a list of do’s and don’ts to ensure you savor each sip: Do enjoy it on a hot, sunny, late afternoon or at an early evening happy hour.
- Do drink it cold, but don’t refrigerate it.
- Place one or two ice cubes in a small glass.
- Pour a small amount of ouzo over the ice. The ouzo will turn from clear to cloudy as the anise reacts with the ice.
- Or, pour a small amount of ouzo into a glass, neat, then add a splash of very cold water in lieu of ice.
Information by Crushbrew link below.
Ouzeri is a type of Greek tavern which serves ouzo and mezethes.
Greek guide Gastronomy explains all about Ouzo you need to know.
- The national drink of ouzo
- What is Ouzo
- The history of ouzo
- Places and regions where ouzo is produced
- How ouzo is made
- How to drink ouzo
The Greek tragedy drink
1/4 Ounce Ouzo
1/4 Ounce Sweet Vermouth
1/4 Sweet Berry liqueur
1/4 Squeeze lime juice In a shaker filled with ice, shake vigorously and strain into a Champagne coupe.