Tasting Arak In Aimere
Aimere is a small village located one-hour away from Bajawa. The village is starting to attract the attention of both the locals and tourists thanks to the production of a local alcoholic beverage called Arak, which is made from the Lontar Palm tree.
As tradition dictates, visitors to the village will be served and fresh Lontar Palm juice which is sweet and slightly effervescent. The juice stays fresh for only a day before it turns stale, and the locals would then start distilling it to make the Arak.
Arak is a very important part of the Florenese culture. No important event, ritual or ceremony takes place without Arak. There are many ways to make this liquor; from grapes, anise and grains to figs and potatoes. These results in alcoholic beverages called Ouzo, Raki and Mastika.
To make the Arak, men would climb the Lontar Palm and flatten its fruits. The juice from the fruit would then drip into a bucket and after 6 days the liquid will drip into a bamboo pipe before going into a water bottle. This process takes about 6 days using different ‘drips’. The result for each would vary, giving you Arak with different volumes of alcohol.
– Don’t drink and drive
– Be careful when trying Arak as it is usually homemade
– When visiting a village, do not refuse the Arak or juice offered to you as it is deemed a huge insult.
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