LOUSI: Authentic sheep yoghurt in Athens


Since 1935, "LOUSI" has been synonymous with Greek dairy culture and tradition. It reminds us of the unsurpassed values ​​of local animal husbandry, using the same old traditional recipes for sheep, cow, and goat yoghurt.

The name of the dairy company "LOUSI" derives from the initials of its founder and pioneer, Loukas Siotropou. The company is considered one of the oldest milk sellers in Athens, as almost 90 years ago, coming down from the mountains of Phocis, Loukas started distributing his famous milk in tall glass bottles.

From the mountains of Aetolia-Acarnania to the pastures of southern Athens, years passed, and joining Loukas were two apprentices, who were only 13 years old when they left their mountain village in Aetolia-Acarnania, Nerochori Thermou.

"My father," the current owner of the LOUSI dairy, Kosmas Fotopoulos, tells me. "He came as a craftsman to Nea Smyrni years ago to learn the secrets of the job from Loukas. Nea Smyrni, Kallithea, and Tzitzifies were full of pastures at that time."

"In the winter, the nomadic herders brought their herds with their animals to these areas, while in the summer, they returned them to Parnassos," he explained.

The two apprentices grew up with their mentor and teacher, Loukas, and years later became partners in his own business.

"When the time came for Loukas to retire from the profession and as his children did not wish to continue his art", Kosmas said, "my father, with his friend and partner, took over the reins of the business, thus continuing the story of the LOUSI dairy farm."


Since 2013, Kosmas has operated the business that the great milkman Loukas started with so much love and mastery.

After all, having his father as a role model and growing up with the traditional sheep yoghurts and LOUSI's milk, he considered his systematic engagement not just with the administrative part of the business to be karmic from the beginning but with every functional position: from production to distribution and from marketing to daily contact with farmers. Especially with the breeders with whom he works and who come from various regions of Attica (Rodopoli, Agios Stefanos, Stamata, Marathon, Varnavas, Kapandriti, etc.) as over the years they have developed almost family ties.

"However," he admits, "there are now few livestock enterprises that are passed down from generation to generation. Young people often abandon the art of their grandfathers and fathers; they don't have the patience to deal with the land or the animals, which is at least discouraging for the future of Greek dairying."

Today, LOUSI supplies around 350 stores throughout Greece and has four of its own, one in Kalamata and three in Attica (two small ones in Zografou and Kaisariani and a large, central store in Alimos).


Of course, the company's flagship remains the classic sheep's yoghurt (in clay and retro plastic packaging) with the skin and that characteristic, somewhat sour taste that awakens memories in the old and educates the young in the search for authentic Greek dairy farming—away from powders and ready-made industrial mixtures, away from meaningless novelties and unnecessary additions.

The range of yoghurts is completed with goat's and cow's yoghurt (full and with 1% fat). In addition, in the "LOUSI" store refrigerators, traditional Greek vanilla cream with fresh cow's milk (chocolate is also available), rice milk, and mustard can be bought.

Of course, especially during this period, the ice cream of "LOUSI" and especially the cream ice cream with which it first started, is considered the product with the greatest demand.

However, many people enter the shops looking for ice cream all year round, even in winter, which is why both the kaimaki ice cream and the other 17 flavours sold by "LOUSI" are available without interruption in all seasons.


Info: 6 Serifou Street, Alimos (gas station), tel. 210 9850682, www.lousi.gr

Loukia Chrisovitsanou is a columnist for Cantina. Translated by Paul Antonopoulos

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