The Cretan spirit


(6 votes)

Raki or tsikoudia, the spirit preferred by most Cretans, has been awarded PGI status. It appears in every single aspect of social activity and every household on the island. Over time, tsikoudia has become a symbol of kindness and hospitality, a spirit which helps with introductions and starts new friendships. More than just a drink, it's a means of communication between friends and strangers alike.

This interesting spirit is produced with single grape marc distillation. Other fruits with a high sugar content are also suitable, such as figs, berries, and prunes, while the final product is sometimes infused with blueberries. At some point between October and late November, every village will stage the traditional kazania, an open day when distillation becomes a chance for locals and fans of the "burning water", as they call it, to celebrate together.

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