This is how we do: Greek summer in a jar (or glass)
Is there any more perfect time than tora—now—or some traditional homemade Greek summer refreshment? A fabulous new discovery is the sleek range of luscious and fruity all natural libations by an independent Greek gourmet purveyor called Idiston.
These are not the sugary artificial fake fruit sodas that populate the cooler section of your local 7-11 or CVS. But with no particular disrespect for that technicolor Diet Mountain Dew Code Red that no one asked for and god-only-knows who invented, these Greek drinks take thirst-quenching refreshment to another, thoroughly organic level. We are talking all natural flavored lemonades and other beverages that require only a tiny bit of mixing to result in what I like to think of as Greek summer in a jar.
My favorites? That's easy: the no-sugar lemonade with lime and Chios mastiha and for that extra bit of zing, the ginger lemonade, also with no sugar. And the SOUR CHERRY CORDIAL deserves the caps, friends, for it will bring you back to the days of lazy childhood summers and perhaps memories of the Greek countryside. The base comes in an amount of 750ml, and what you do is mix the lemonade base with cold sparkling water (ideally), and mix the sour cherry cordial with ice cold flat water—we recommend Samaria spring water, sourced from the White Mountains of Crete.
Did I mention these drinks are free of additives, colors and perfumes, and are packaged in attractive reusable clear glass bottles? They are! And Idiston (which is based just outside of Athens) has long-term relationships with producers that provide them with the freshest of sun-kissed, sustainably grown fruits according to the season.
Idiston also makes a range of marmalades, relishes, spreads and of course Greek Column's all-time favorite, those tangy and uniquely Greek products called spoon sweets. Idiston pumps out no fewer than 10 varieties of these wonderfully delectable pure fruit preserves, but of course we are unapologetically partial to sour cherry, or as one aficionado confided in us (and we quote), "mmm, mmm, MMM!" So, the details: you can learn more about the company here (website in Greek), or feel free to contact us for information about an Idiston distributor near you.
"Ice-cold artisanal Greek lemonade with Chios mastiha in a craft glass with ice? That almost sounds better than a day at the beach!!" -- Kosta K., Athens
Incidentally, if you're looking for a fine snack to pair with your artisanal lemonade or virgin cherry cordial on the rocks, we heartily recommend the Riddle Bar...also made in Greece, also scrumptious. The chocolate and peanut butter combo pairs nicely with a refreshing Greek lemonade and the bars fit nicely inside a suitcase, or maybe a toga.
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