Imagine you are slowly sipping the spirit wine and blend into your soul. Scientifically, this is precisely what it means to drink Arak, or what is widely referred to as Anis Schnapps.
Despite the vast difference in taste between Arak and Wine; The industry of Arak closely interlinks with the wine industry. In the past, the manufacture of Arak relied on distilling the wine itself and taking out (wine-perspiration, wine-water, or wine-spirit). In fact, the word "Arak" literally means sweat/ perspiration in the Arabic language, and here it is the short form of "wine perspiration."
Since the production of Arak was dependent on wine, it is obvious that Arak as a beverage is much younger than wine. In addition, the complex process of distilling wine requires special equipment and is not a simple process like fermenting grapes and making wine. The first written evidence of Arak dates back to the 8th century, when Arab alchemists were the first to scientifically describe the process of arak production. Written evidence from Arabic literature shows us that Arak was widely used in the Abbasid era. In the 8th century AD, the alchemist al-Kindi roughly mentions the distillation of wine and Arak. A few decades later, Jabir bin Hayyan explains in detail the production of Arak. Although Arak was widely used from the beginning of the Abbasid era, it was not exported to Europe from Mediterranean Arab countries until centuries later. By the fourteenth century, knowledge of wine distillation reached the East and West. The word Arak in its various forms became widely used, so much so that the Mongols distorted the word race to araki or raki and mentioned it for the first time in a Chinese text in 1330. The word itself has spread throughout most of Asia and the Eastern Mediterranean.
Today, arak production is widespread in the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean and to a limited extent in Iraq and Iran. In most of the latter countries, especially Lebanon and Syria, Arak is a staple in every household. It is traditionally made according to family recipes and mainly for personal use.
The great popularity of Arak in Lebanon and Syria led to the establishment of several arak factories in these two countries. The Arak produced in these factories is one of the finest arak varieties sold. It is worth mentioning that the previous Lebanese civil war and the current Syrian war stopped many activities, but the wine and arak factories were not affected. They have not stopped production for a moment despite the ongoing conflict.