Meet Kumilio's Lambrou family, keepers of centuries-old traditions
2 min read
I started Zelos Greek Artisan with a purpose: to help the emerging community of artisans in Greece get their goods to a wider audience, and create a sustainable livelihood. People like Kumilio's Lambrou family are keepers of centuries-old traditions, yet combine them with modern methods for a contemporary take on classic Greek cuisine. These remarkable people produce what I consider the best Greek food staples around and I'm thrilled we've been able to bring their products to the States.
Costas Lambrou and his family created their Kumilio fig company in 2015, daring to start a new business as Greece was coming out of its economic crisis. Originally trained as an architect, Costas was born and raised in the Kimi region of Evia island that is famous for its unique figs and was inspired by the special terroir of what’s often called “the balcony of the Aegean”.
The Kimi fig has a thinner skin than other Mediterranean figs, making it one of the best dried fruits you can enjoy. The Lambrou family held on to traditional techniques to handcraft a selection of healthy snacks & fig desserts, full of antioxidants, fiber, vitamins & minerals...all the fig benefits that have made these a go-to snack in the Mediterranean Diet since ancient times!
There are no additives, preservatives, artificial coloring or flavors in Kumilio fig products, giving us small-batch foods that are a testament to the Lambrou family's love of their homeland. Today they cultivate nearly 1000 fig trees in the village of Kadi, where Costas was born and where they also have a small production facility. Kumilio takes advantage of the full life cycle of the fig, from May, when the first early figs go into their traditional spoon sweet, all the way to September, when the drying is completed.
The drying process itself is unique, as extra-ripe figs are cut into halves and placed on wooden racks for the sun to dry them. That takes a few days, after which the figs are sorted by hand and similar sized halves are paired up to make an "askada", which is dried again for another couple of days in the sun before being sterilized and then packed, with absolutely no preservatives or chemicals used in the entire process.
We chose Kumilio for their efforts to develop the unique Kimi figs naturally, without mechanical processing, keeping traditions in a way that is inextricably linked to the land. We appreciate that they work closely with other local producers, strengthening their community socially and financially. Their appreciation of striking packaging design also made them a natural Artisan for us to work with. We hope you love their products as much as we do!
Enjoy the delicious taste of PDO Kimi figs from the island of Evia and bring the flavors of a Greek summer to your table. Hand-crafted by Kumilio using traditional techniques with no additives, preservatives, artificial coloring or flavors.