Today, in the settlement of Plomari, Lesvos, in the ultra-modern, privately-owned Barbayannis ouzo production facilities, technology is combined with history and tradition.
The Barbayannis family has faithfully preserved the 150-year-old ouzo tradition, following in the footsteps of Efstathios Barbayannis. The family carefully selects high quality, natural ingredients for its ouzo and pays special attention to the ouzo distillation procedure, which is still carried out in the old, traditional way.
The year was 1860, when Efstathios J. Barbayannis arrived at the picturesque port of Plomari, on the rich, fertile and sunny island of Lesvos, Greece. The island’s running waters gave life to an excellent variety of aniseed and to hundreds of rare, sweet-smelling herbs. Efstathios Barbayannis brought his experience and knowledge of the distillation process with him from the Russian city of Odessa and started his own distillery which produced first-rate quality ouzo
Receipe of Success
For the past five generations, the members of the famous ouzo producing Barbayannis family have passionately pursued perfection in the taste of ouzo and have maintained traditional ouzo distillation techniques.
Throughout the world, the Barbayannis name is strongly connected with ouzo, the finest Greek beverage. This success is due to the secret family recipe, which has been the basis of the quality and taste of Ouzo Barbayannis for five generations.
Barbayannis is one of the ouzo producers in Greece producing 100% distilled ouzo and following this procedure since 1860, coming up with ouzo exclusively flavoured by aniseed and other aromatic herbs. Find out more about what it takes to create the finest Greek ouzo.
The selection of aniseed is of great importance for the production of good ouzo. When the plant is fully ripe, it is harvested, tied up in small sheaves and dried carefully in the shade so that its green color does not fade.
The next step is “drimonisma”, during which the plant’s seed is carefully separated from the stems. This is done by hand on a tiled plate of marble. The aniseed is then carefully stored in pouches made of plant fibers, with all necessary precautions taken against humidity.
Alcohol, which constitutes the basis for the production of ouzo, is tested twice. First when it is delivered and then immediately before it is used for distillation. It is 100% pure ethyl alcohol made from raisins.
The mixture is poured into special alembics (distillation cauldrons) and is distilled three times, with no sudden rises or drops of temperature. From the first distillation, only the “heart”, meaning the middle fraction of distillation, is retained. This is then used for the second and third distillations, which are carried out at a slow pace, under constant supervision and testing.
The “adoloto”, which is the term for the middle fraction of the last distillation, is the perfect essence of the procedure’s last stage. It is then stored in large stainless-steel tanks to settle, so that the ingredients can “bond” until homogeneity of the mixture is achieved.
Before the essence is bottled, it is slowly mixed with crystal-clear water, from the mountains of Plomari, Lesvos. This water has excellent properties and the appropriate contents of salts and minerals.
The result of this traditional distillation process is a 100% extract, which provides Ouzo Barbayanni its uniqueness. (A content of only 20% extract is required by law). This distillation, which produces 100% extract and is adhered to for all five types of Ouzo Barbayanni, is enjoyed today by thousands of admirers of this fine Greek liquor in Europe, America, Australia and New Zealand.
The Ouzo Barbayannis family has been passionately pursuing perfection in the taste of ouzo and preserving the traditional distillation techniques for five generations. As a result, the Barbayannis name is identified throughout the world for its prime ouzo, the finest Greek liquor beverage.
Today, in the picturesque settlement of Plomari, Lesvos, technology harmoniously co-exists with history and tradition. The Ouzo Museum was founded to express the love and passion the Barbayannis family has for the production of ouzo.
The Ouzo Museum is located next to the modern, privately-owned distilleries of the Barbayannis ouzo production facilities.
In the museum visitors can see the original equipment used to bottle and label the famous Ouzo Barbayanni Blue, as well as the first alembic, constructed in 1858 in Constantinople, used for testing century-old secrets and techniques, and to compose the recipes of the Barbayannis family. The Ouzo Museum respectfully embraces tradition and is the home of the secret of the quality and taste found in Ouzo Barbayanni.
- Ouzo Barbayanni Blue
This classic ouzo was first produced in 1860 and consists of a 100% pure aniseed extract and sweet-smelling herbs, with an alcohol content of 46% Vol.
- Ouzo Barbayanni Green
An ouzo with a unique, soft taste, 100% pure extract, produced with an alcohol content of 42% Vol.
- Ouzo Barbayanni Aphrodite
An ouzo with dry, mature taste, a 100% pure extract of excellent quality, produced with an alcohol content of 48% Vol.
- Ouzo Barbayanni Evzon
A traditional aperitif, which was first produced in 1950, with a dominant aniseed scent and an alcohol content of 47% Vol.
- Ouzo Collectible Edition
The Collectible Bottle Greek Ouzo Barbayannis is a “superior quality distillation” 100 % distilled. It is produced in a rather restricted quantity at Plomari, Lesvos according to an original recipe and is a product of a continuous series of fractional distillations.
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