The uplifting Greek Drink OUZO

Ouzo drink with its strong anise flavour and with a little hint of Greece is a clear drink which gets milky-like when water is poured into it and aromas emerge and demonstrate its other qualities. Ouzo is so much more than just a drink. It is a way of life in Greece as it makes people loosen-up, brings them together especially when it is served with mouthwatering mezedakia (tidbits).

Ouzo originates from Asia Minor and nowadays is produced in Northern Greece, on Chios andLesvos Islands. The complex and detailed production process differs from recipe to recipe which goes on from generation to generation and remains a well kept family secret. The drink is flavoured with a variety of herbs that grow on Greek land such as coriander, fennel, star anise, garden angelica and the renown anise.

The fermentation is done in copper stills where alcohol and aromatic herbs stand for hours. The mixture is distilled and tested out several times. It is then stored in order for the aromas and texture to settle. The distillate is diluted with water to obtain the desired alcohol content, which by law must be higher than 37,5% vol., and then bottled.

Ouzo usually consists of a smaller proportion of grape distillate comparing to raki but larger than 20% according to regulations. In Greece today there are more than 300 ouzo producers.

Ouzo drink is served straight, with water or with ice, in a tall slim glass in order to add as much water as we please. This drink is also used in cocktails mixed with fruit & vegetable juices as well as liqueurs. Some connoisseurs, drink ouzo alternately with Greek coffee, while others add a few drops in their coffee!

Ouzo opens your appetite and makes you crave the delicious greek tidbits called mezedes. It is a perfect match to cured meat or fish and all sort of cold cuts. The drink is best served with good friends by the sea and is part of a Greek summer ritual. Visit Lesvos – Hotel Defkalion


What to do in Petra Lesvos

Petra is located on the North of the island, 63 Khms. and about 1 hour’s drive from the capital Mytilene. You can reach Lesvos by plain or ferry and then catch a local bus from Mytilene, take a taxi or rent a car in order to go to Petra. Should you wish to take the bus, you must go to the main bus stop (LESVOS KTEL) located at the centre of Mytilene. The new Schengen Gate in Petra is open from the 1st of April till the end of November, so travellers from Turkey can come to Petra direct. Visit Lesvos – Hotel Defkalion

All flights to Lesvos are to Mytilene Airport “Odysseas Elytis” (MJT). There are domestic flights that connect Lesvos to Athens, Thessaloniki, Rhodes and Crete. There are also direct flights to Lesvos from the U.K., The Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Norway, Italy, Serbia, The Czech republic, Slovenia, Denmark and Sweden. Lesvos can be reached by ferry from Piraeus, Thessaloniki, Kavala, Chios and other islands. You can also reach Mytilene by boat from Ayvalik, Turkey and Petra from Turkey.

It is 114 steps up to the Church of Glykofilousa Panagia. But the view will put a smile on your face. From there you can see the long sandy beach with the taverna’s, hotels and café’s just waiting for your call. The Vareltzidenas Mansion, a traditional architectural jewel with tapestries from the 18th century is just around the corner where the traditional market starts with beautiful shops, restaurants and bars. Visit the sandy beaches of Anaxos and Avlaki with great taverna’s on the beach. Walk or cycle around the sign posted paths to Petri, Lafiona, Ligones and Vafios. Do some scuba diving and sailing around the north coast or take the boat and visit Molyvos and Skala Skamia. Visit Lesvos – Hotel Defkalion.