Gatsios Meltemi Ouzo
Thanassis Gatsios was from Istanbul, and came from a long line of distillers there. In 1878 he decided to move to Arta in Epirus and founded the 1st distillery on the Province, Gatsios Distillery, bringing with them the recipes and flavours perfected in the city.
In 2007 the family built a new, modern, facility and the awards have been rolling in ever since!
As with all great Ouzo’s the specific recipe is a closely guarded secret, but for Gatsios, the key is top quality anethole, an essential oil produced by hydrodistillation of fennel, and he believes that the best fennel in the world is actually from Tasmania(!). At 10 times the price it is dear, but he feels it is worth it. The Gatisos Ouzo also contains aniseed, coriander, lemon, orange, mastic, and angelica root. The flavours are added to create what is called an “ouzo yeast” which is the essential oils produced by hydrodistillation of the flavour ingredients. This is then distilled and the heads and tails are removed, though most Ouzo’s retain and re-distill these. Water from the famous spring of Agios Georgios is added to get the desired alc%. It then spends 2 months in tanks to “rest”.
The result is an incredibly smooth Ouzo that has intense and complex aromas built around the fennel, but with some delicate citrus and floral notes. It is light, delicate and with low sugar this is easy to drink and delicious!