What is Mastiha?
The Mastiha tree is a small evergreen shrub, also known as a “lentisk,” with a life span of more than 100 years. Mysteriously, it can only be found on the island of Chios Greece, which controls 100% of the world’s production of Mastiha.
Mastiha resin develops as tear drops that form on the trunk and branch tips of the tree. To cultivate the process, a small iron tool called kentitiri is used to make small scars on the lentisk’s bark. This process is called Kentima, one of the most crucial stages in Mastiha production. The delicate and skillful handiwork of Kentima is likened to embroidery and it is a UNESCO recognized 2500-year-old tradition.
The resin droplets, known as Mastiha Tears, are left to slowly seep out of the bark and dry in the natural sunlight to form translucent golden crystals. Before the first autumn rain, when the tears are ready to be harvested, the area around the tree is cleaned, leveled and coated in a fine white soil on which the tears fall and are gathered.
The tears are then sleeved and diligently washed with olive oil soap and rainwater. Large and medium sized Mastiha tears are then cleaned one by one with a knife or needle, preparing them for distillation. The Mastiha then undergoes a delicate process of aging and distillation. The addition of secret ingredients and special formulas results in the pure ambrosia, which we bring to you as FOS Mastiha.
FOS Mastiha liqueur is a clear spirit with a unique sweet taste — a full range of herbal tones and tree essences, which are beautifully pronounced when served chilled in a shot glass. FOS Mastiha is perfect for enjoying after a meal and is becoming an increasingly popular ingredient in signature cocktails at specialty venues. As the authentic liqueur of the Chios Mastiha Growers Association, FOS, embodies, embraces, and celebrates the time-honored craftsmanship of Mastiha production.
Here are three FOS Greek Mastiha cocktails to try this fall:
1.5 oz. FOS Greek Mastiha