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Raise a glass to the incredibly distinct anise seed flavor of the distilled alcoholic beverage known as arak, because it is time for World Arak Day! This drink has roots in the Middle East that date back several hundred years, all the way back to the 12th century. But even with its ancient spirit, arak continues to have a modern appeal.

Considered to be a national drink of the country of Lebanon, as well as other nations such as Israel, Egypt, Syria, Palestine and Jordan, the drink offers a flavor and aroma that is unmistakable. In fact, some historians believe that arak was one of the first flavored spirits that was ever created. Made by extracting anise seeds into grape brandy, the drink is extremely simple and pure, without any additives or other flavors to complicate it.

History of World Arak Day

World Arak Day was founded in 2023 in an effort to promote and raise awareness for this distilled drink that offers a unique journey into the world of many Middle Eastern nations, specifically in the Levantine region. The Terra Sancta Trading Company, a Florida business that imports alcoholic beverages from the Middle East, was responsible for the founding of World Arak Day.

Often enjoyed as part of a culture of hospitality including lingering for hours over a meal, at an outdoor mezze restaurant or at home, arak is often associated with weekends and holidays. World Arak Day is here to celebrate and show appreciation for this historic beverage that offers a pure and simple flavor that anyone can enjoy!

How to Celebrate World Arak Day

Have a delightful time enjoying and raising awareness for this unique and interesting beverage by celebrating World Arak Day with some of these ideas:

Try Some Arak

While folks who grew up in the Middle East or have cultural roots that are part of the Levant will probably be familiar with this drink, others may have never tried arak. Therefore, the best thing to do in celebration of World Arak Day would be to source some arak and try it out! Typically, arak is sipped with water, using either a one to one water to arak ratio or even a two to one water to arak ratio, mixed in a traditional rounded glass pitcher. And don’t forget to add ice!

Learn a Bit More About Arak

Celebrate World Arak Day with some of these fun facts:

  • While arak is a clear and unsweetened drink, when it is enjoyed in the traditional way, cut with water and ice, this high-proof distillate takes on a cloudy appearance.

  • Arak has a high alcohol content: between 80 and 126 proof.

  • The country of Lebanon is one place that regulates arak in a way that is similar to the way wine is regulated in Italy or France. These Lebanese standards are considered by many to be the only proper way to distill the anise seed flavored arak. According to these rules, arak must come from native variety white grapes, like Merwah or Obeidy. The process includes triple distilling the arak to 53% ABV and then aging it in a clay pot for one year or more.

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