Drinks

Mastiha: Greek Liqueur (Part II)

With summer in full swing, we’re all flocking to those refreshing cocktails that are perfect for beating the heat –  the usual suspects: mojitos, mint juleps, vodka lemonades, etc. We touched on some of these in last year’s post on our favourite summer cocktails.

They’re are all refreshing cocktails in their own right, but one little-known wonder I wrote about last summer was the Greek liqueur Mastiha.

For the uninitiated, Mastiha is derived from the mastic tree found only on the Greek island of Chios. For a detailed description and history of it, refer to my original post. Although it’s wonderful all year-round, it’s especially delicious during the summer months, as its sweet flavour lends itself perfectly to summer cocktails.

Here are three new delicious Mastiha cocktails for the summer!

Skinos Lemonade

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Skinos is the most popular brand of Mastiha, and has many cocktails named after it for this reason.

A straightforward drink that brings out both the Mastiha and lemon, this FMMS original is perfect for the poolside!

1 ½ oz Skinos
½ oz lemon juice
San Pellegrino Limonata
Sprig of mint

Fill a Collins glass with ice and pour in the Skinos and lemon juice. Top with the San Pellegrino and garnish with a sprig of mint.

Mastiha Mule

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A simple variation of the Moscow Mule, this version dubs in Mastiha (duh) for vodka. The result is a surprisingly fresh cocktail that is every bit as delicious as the original.

1 oz Skinos
3 oz ginger beer
¼ oz lime juice
Lime wheel

Combine the Skinos and ginger beer in a copper mug or highball glass filled with ice. Add lime juice. Stir gently and garnish with a lime wheel.

Skinos White

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There’s yogurt in this cocktail.

……

……………

Still there?

Yes, I’ve gone mad.

But before you call the appropriate authorities to take me away, hear me out. I came across the idea of adding Greek yogurt to a drink from various websites, but our recipe has been tweaked to what we feel is an adventurous, yet balanced cocktail.

In fact, it was one of the cocktails we introduced to EVOO Greek Kitchen during our cocktail collaboration and currently featured on their menu.

It’s not for everyone, but it’s definitely a unique summer cocktail for the patio. The sweetness of the yogurt comes through, but is balanced with the ginger and mint.

If you’re too embarrassed to admit that you put yogurt in your cocktail, just tell people you’re drinking some milk in a fancy glass.

1 oz Skinos
1 oz vodka
1 teaspoon Greek yogurt
½ oz lemon juice
2 slices fresh ginger
7 mint leaves

Add ingredients to a shaker and muddle. Dry shake, then add ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a coupe and garnish with mint leaves.

Summer is the perfect time to discover new drinks and recipes – especially those that are less known to us in North America, but still quench that summer refreshment we all seek.

In my opinion, Mastiha does just that. Greeks have been drinking it for thousands of years, so do yourself a favour and get on board.

Your Mojito may just have to wait.

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