Historical personalities lived in Nafplio, but also simple folk, with a vision and flair to make their homeland unique, special. Just after the declaration of the Greek state as an independent one, in 1840, Ioannis Karonis opens up his raki-shop in Nafplio. After a lot of planning and given his love for ouzo production, he finds himself equipped with two distillation tanks and ventures out to learn more about the secrets of distillation. In 1869 the Karonis distillery is founded.
Pioneers, as they have always been, the Karonis family set up a unit of alcohol (ethanol) production using distillers and machinery, far beyond the grasp of their time; they were imported from Germany and France to be installed in an advanced for its time and state of the art factory. The alcohol was used to distil and produce ouzo and mastic liqueur and their business was then called "Tegea House of Spirits".
Gold and silver medals follow, awarded by the International Fair of Salonica, a fact that gives the distilled beverages a "seal" of quality. I. Karonis' obsession with optimizing the quality of his products led to the use of top level varieties of aniseed and other aromatic herbs, offering thus to the next generations the unique, as well as invaluable recipe for Karonis ouzo, which remains unchangeable until today. The ouzo museum is a hospitable venue where visitors can enjoy tour guides in five languages (English, German, French, Italian and Spanish) and invites us to marvel at tools, machinery and filed documents of the distillery house dated back from the 1880s, e.g. the first distillation tank of the factory and the invoice of its purchase from France. But above all, it invites us to taste the flavours of the unique Greek alcoholic beverage that every foreigner has correlated to the flavour of Greece: ouzo.