Last month I began my annual summer review of ouza, and started off the series with one I had never encountered before: Romios.
I described that it had a taste close to bitter and light on the anise, which is atypical of classic ouzo but might be preferred by those who don’t like their ouzo to taste too much like “licorice.”
And now, a few weeks later, I have found a similar one: Tsolias, produced in Halkidiki, is almost a duplicate of Romios, which is from Aigio.
Tsolias is a notch below 75 proof, making it possibly the lightest ouzo I’ve ever tasted, and therefore perhaps better-suited for sipping neat sans mezedes on a chilly evening than seaside at a psarotaverna on the rocks with a table full of mezedes.
In fact, Tsolias can almost be described as a grappa infused with just a hint of anise flavor.
This is a good ouzo to try for those wishing to “drink outside the box.”