Tsipouro

From Academic Kids

Tsipouro (Τσίπουρο) is an alcoholic drink found in Greece and in particular in Thessaly, Epirus, Macedonia and on the island of Crete. Tsipouro is a strong distilled spirit containing approximately 37 per cent alcohol per volume and is produced from the must-residue of the wine-press. The name tsipouro is used throughout the country, except for Crete, where the same spirit with a stronger aroma is known as tsikoudia. In other areas of Greece, the Oriental name raki is used, from which the term "rakizio" is derived, used to refer to the drink's distillation process, which usually turns into a huge celebration among family, friends and neighbours.

The first production of Tsipouro was the work of some monks. This occurred during the 14th century on Mount Athos in Macedonia, Greece. Then, this idea of using the must-residue of the winepress in order to produce a spirit, passed to viticulturists in poorer regions of the whole country, which already used the distillation process for other purposes. Thus, Tsipouro was born.

Depending on the time of year, Tsipouro was used either as refreshment or as a hot beverage, and depending on the time of day, it replaced the drinking of coffee or wine. Tsipouro and Tsikoudia, as with all alcoholic beverages in Greece, always seemed to coincide with various social gatherings, as their consumption had a festive and symposium-like quality. Today, Tsipouro has been acknowledged and appreciated by consumers and is recommended by wine drinkers from all over the world.

Best served in shot glasses very cold, often encountered with meze food or accompanying the check and halva or other dessert in restaurants.

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