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Louza: the amazing meze of Cyclades you should not miss

Andros ● Cyclades ● Kea ● Mykonos ● Santorini ● Serifos ● Sikinos ● Syros ● Tinos ● 02 October 2017
 

Louza is a delicious meze of Cyclades, a delectable appetiser made of the best cuts of pork and prepared differently on every Cycladic island. If you want to taste the amazing Greek cuisine, louza is a perfect sample of delicatessen local food, a product you can also buy and take back home.

Efforts in Greece to preserve meat date back to ancient times, with the earliest references found in Homer. Precious tenderloin, the mellow cut of the animal, was cured and turned into a delicious snack served in important occasions. In Byzantine times, this cured cut went to Italy, where it evolved further and became the famous lonza. The tenderloin came back in Greece with the name louza in most islands of Cyclades, while in Crete its name is apaki.



Each island seasons louza differently, depending on the availability of herbs and spices, but generally, in every Cycladic island, you can taste this amazing meze and have an abundant culinary experience.

In Kea, the cured pork is called loza, and the cut is the blade end. It is salted, kept under a heavy weight for 2 hours, and then marinated in red wine scented with allspice, savoury and pepper. Then, it is wrapped in intestine and smoked with dry fig branches before being hung out to dry in the cold wind.

In Mykonos, louza is one of the most famous local products. It is made from pork centre loin. It is salted in brine, dried and prepared with savoury, allspice and pepper.

In Santorini, this delicacy is called apochti and made from the blade end of the loin. Once salted, it rests in vinegar for two or three days, and then, it is seasoned with pepper, savoury and cinnamon before being hung to dry in the sun.

In Serifos, the local version of louza has strong notes of garlic and wine, is flavoured with cumin, and it is much moister and less salty than on the other islands.

In Sikinos, the tenderloin is salted and then dunked in a bath of vinegar with rosemary and saffron.

In Syros, the version of louza is the richest among all islands thanks to the sophistication of the cuisine in Syros. It is salted and flavoured with pepper, allspice, clove and cinnamon, and the spices are spiked in pretty rows to look even more delicious than they already are.

The louza of Tinos spends a week in red or rose wine, and then it is flavoured with allspice, fennel seed, clove and pepper before being smoked.

Andros has a totally different version. The smoked and spiced louza is hung together with sausages and clean chunks of pork on a mesh suspended on a rod to be cooked and smoked. The meat is seared in lard and put together with its fat and spices in clay jars, where it is preserved for a year.


Where to Stay

Hotel in Ios, Greece Brother's Hotel
9.7 10
Brother's Hotel
Yialos, Chora, 84001 Ios, Greece

Brother's Hotel is located in Chora Ios, only an 8-minute walk from the sandy and well-organised beach of Yialos. Ios Port is 1.5 km away.

Appartment in Naxos, Greece Depis Suites & Apartments
Depis Suites & Apartments
Kinidarou Str., 84300 Naxos, Greece

Depis Suites & Apartments is situated in Naxos Chora, just 100 m from the popular beach of Saint George and 300 m from the town center. The main port of Naxos is 1 km away and the Naxos Airport is at 2 km.

Hotel & Appartment in Naxos, Greece Lygdamis Hotel
8.9 10
Lygdamis Hotel
Chora, 84300 Naxos, Greece

Lygdamis Hotel is located in Chora, just a 4-minute walk from Agios Georgios beach and a ten-minute walk from the Port of Naxos. Naxos National Airport is 3 km away.


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