The perfume of slow burning logs welcomes you to our distillery where we heat four copper stills in the same way that generations of arak makers have always done. We use more than 500 tons of Obeïdi grapes each year that are grown widely on Beqaa farms. We have 50,000 liters of arak ageing in clay amphoras – just like the ones the Romans used.

Making traditional arak is a long process that requires patience and methodology.

At any time you will be entitled to visit the facility, that is the vats where we stock the Obeïdi grapes, the stills that we use to turn wine into alcohol, brouillis and arak, the storage of fresh anis and above all the ageing room where Massaya has a capacity to age large volumes of arak vintage after vintage before releasing them.

Of course, more modern equipment will allow faster arak production and is commonly used. But at Massaya we remain dedicated to the triple distillation process that will transform the Obeïdi wine step-by-step into Massaya arak.

First, the wine is poured into traditional Moorish-lid copper stills where it is heated by gentle fires of vine wood.  As the vapors rise, they are carried through copper pipes into the cooling device where alcohol condenses into clear drops.

After eight hours the process is repeated to remove impurities and leave the heart of the alcohol, the coeur de chauffe.

This is followed by a third distillation of 24 hours that gives the arak its purity and distinction. We combine the third distillation with the maceration of the best green organic aniseed from the village of Hiné on the Syrian slopes of Mount Hermon.

We then collect the non-aged arak in traditional clay amphoras made by the potters in the Mount Lebanon village of Beit Chebab. These are just porous enough to absorb some of the liquid and allow it to breathe. During this crucial resting period, which last many months, the clay lends a faint golden clarity to the matured spirit that will bear the name Massaya Arak.

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