Simple ideas to take advantage of Chios mastiha's cosmetic properties

  • Published in News

From the ancient times the belief that Chios mastiha had cosmetic properties made many people use it widely in this field. Today clinical studies have shown the antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and therapeutic properties of mastiha. Mastiha is used in many cosmetics as it improves the appearance of the skin and hydrates it in depth, and it is famous for having a particularly positive effect on acne-prone skin types.

Read more...

The countless aspects of Beauty at Chios Mastic Museum

  • Published in News

“The countless aspects of Beauty” is a periodic exhibition that took place at the National Archaeological Museum in celebration of its 150 years. A choice of unique antiquities that were presented in the context of this exhibition travelled to the thematic museums of Pireaus’s Group Cultural Foundation. In 2018, the exhibition was presented at Sparti, Ioannina and Tinos. Last Tuesday, it opened at Chios Mastic Museum, where it will remain until September 8, 2019.

Read more...

Mastiha on the rocks!

  • Published in News

The unique Mastiha is the brand product of Chios. Its multiple uses are constantly increasing. However, since the old days, the Chians used to make a special liqueur flavored with mastic.

The "Chios Mastiha" liqueur is classified among the Greek PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) products. It is produced either by blending mastic oil, alcohol and sugar, or by extracting alcohol from mastic tears and then distilling and mixing with sugar. It is transparent and distinguished by its particular aroma and its qualities as an excellent digestive. A glass of mastiha liqueur can accompany sweets or ice creams on an afternoon call, can perfectly close a nice meal, or give a special flavor to a fruit salad.

In recent years, its special flavor has challenged the imagination of professional bartenders all over the world, who are creating cocktails with mastiha. Also the local bars of Chios have worked hard and have managed to raise their cocktail lists to a very high level, satisfying even for the most demanding connoisseurs, and winning international bartending contests. On your next visit to Chios, visit the local bars and you will be thrilled by the variety and the quality of the mastiha flavored cocktails.

Till then, try making a Mastiha Mojito” following this recipe:

Materials:2 ½ tsp. sugar

10 ml of fresh lemon juice

40 ml mastiha liqueur

20 ml of white rum

soda

ice

some mint leaves for garnish 

Implementation:Put the sugar, lemon and mint in a mortar and beat them. Add the rest of the ingredients and enjoy!

 

Read more...

Wandering around Chios Mastiha villages in the autumn

  • Published in News

If you visit the villages of Mastiha (Chios Gum Mastic) at this time of the year in Chios island, Greece, you will come across a familiar image: women mastiha producers, and also men, of all ages are gathered in small groups at the alleys and corners of the village with large traditional sieves full of the recently gathered mastiha. They have already started the long copious process of cleaning the product. The aroma of mastiha fills the narrow village roads at Pyrgi, Mesta, Kalamoti and the rest of the 24 villages of mastiha.  

The first step of cleansing is the “tahtarisma”, that is the sifting of the product in order to separate the mastiha from leaves and soil. The next step is the cleansing in cold water, some even wash it with sea water and then the mastiha is laid out to dry.

After the product has dried, traditionally women take over. Using pointy small knives they clean each and every small piece and granule of mastiha from dirt and soil that may be stuck on it. This is a process that starts now, in the autumn, but depending on the workload and the time they devote to the cleansing, it may go on until spring.

This part of the cleaning process is done in groups. Companies of women gather to work together, while at the same time they exchange news and tell stories and jokes. This is their way to have fun during the difficult and monotonous process of mastiha cleaning.

Solidarity and cooperation between mastiha growers is characteristic of the social organization at the villages. For example, there is the tradition of “danikes”, which means borrowed. According to this tradition, a woman would ask her friends to help her with the cleaning then she would reciprocate. This goes for other agricultural tasks that one might have trouble completing in one’s own. However, it is a big disgrace if someone accepts help but does not reciprocate.

Another tradition which shows the power of women’s networks at the villages of Mastiha are the “syntrofisses” (meaning “comrades” or “companions”) at Pyrgi village. According to this tradition, a teenage girl’s mother would ask an already existing group of girls to accept her daughter in their group or company. The other mothers would talk it over with their daughters to decide whether they would accept the new girl in the group. The syntrofisses would meet daily to provide mutual support, work together and go out together.

Similar companies are found nowadays while wandering around the villages of mastiha. As the Mastiha villages are built as castlevillages, there is not enough room for the houses to have yards and patios, so people use the streets in front of their houses instead. The ladies of the Mastiha villages, despite their hard labour,  will welcome the visitor who passes from their street while they are working, cleaning the mastiha. They will show them the process of cleaning and will even pose gladly for a photograph.

Mastiha cultivation, which is basically unaltered during the centuries, has been inscribed in UNESCO’s list of intangible heritage. If you would like to experience the mastiha cultivation, you can contact Chios Tourism Department at the e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information or you can contact one of the specialized agencies in Chios island that provide experiential tours.

Sources:

The Chios Mastiha Growers Association https://www.gummastic.gr/el/mastixa-chiou/paradosiaki-kalliergia#katharisma

Zacharopoulos C., Barbikas E. (n.d.), Chios Mastiha PDO. Historic and folkloric references. The Chios Mastiha Growers Association

Read more...

Archive

Click here, to visit the website of the former Prefecture of Chios.

Chios.gr is the official tourism web site for Chios, run by the North Aegean Prefecture, where you'll find information on the main tourist destinations, beaches, as well as activities, events and much more!

You are not allowed to reproduce the whole or part of this work in any way without our written permission.

greece

mygreece

Read reviews about Chios on
Χίος

pvaigaiou en

where-to-stay

Contact: Regional Unit Of Chios Department of Tourism | Phone numbers: 0030 22713-50514 & 0030 22713-50516 | FAX: 0030 22713-50517 | Emailtourismos@chios.pvaigaiou.gov.gr