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Name originating from Arabic (araq = sweat, juice) for originally many spirits in the Orient. According to another version, the name is derived from the Mongolian term "Karakumyss" for a spirit made from fermented mare's milk. Today, arrack, arak, arrack or rack is mainly used for distillates from the Middle East, Sri Lanka (Ceylon), Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand. These are produced from various sugar-containing raw materials such as cane sugar molasses, palm sap, plant sap, rice or grapes. Palm wine is made from the sugary sap from the male flower heads of certain palms (coconut palm, sugar palm). It is distilled up to four times, and aniseed is often added in the last pass. This is a speciality in Jordan, Lebanon and Thailand. As a result, this liquor tastes similar to the Turkish raki or the Greek ouzo. The best known arrack is Batavia arrack from the Indonesian island of Java (Batavia is the capital of Indonesia). The EU spirits regulation does not mention arrack. As with all aniseed spirits, a characteristic milky discolouration - the so-called Louche effect (ouzo effect) - occurs when water is added or when very strongly cooled.

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Egon Mark

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Egon Mark
Diplom-Sommelier, Weinakademiker und Weinberater, Volders (Österreich)

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