The other explanation for where the name comes from is the razaki grapes used to make the aniseed brandy and over time, ‘razaki’ became ‘raki’ in common speech.
During the first period of liberalisation in the Ottoman empire between 1826 and 1830 raki began to be produced in many different places. That being said, a considerable amount of raki was produced for personal consumption in small towns and villages.
Under the reign of Sultan Abdul Hamid II, Islamic law was reimposed on the empire after the reigns of his father Abdulmejid I and his brother Murad V. During that period, raki could only be produced by the Sultan’s finance minister, a Muslim named Saricazade Ragıp Pasha. It was also at this time that the first parliament was dissolved and the country was governed under pan-Islamic and pan-Turkist ideologies. The Greeks in the European parts of the empire declared their independence in 1830 and in 1878 the Bulgarians and other Baltic countries also broke away from Ottoman rule. During this period consumption of raki in the Ottoman empire continued to grow. Raki produced using the Greek method has become part of Greek culture under the name of Ouzo. Between 1920 and 1926 the trade in alcoholic drinks was strictly forbidden in Turkey. It was not until a law came into force in June 1926 that raki could once again be manufactured by the Turkish government monopoly. The first new factory was set up in Gaziantep in 1930, with additional facilities following in Diyarbakir, Tekirdag, and Nevsehir in 1931. During this period, popular consumption of alcohol followed the example set by Turkey’s leader, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.
Today, raki production in Turkey is permitted under the state monopoly so many companies are creating raki using their own recipes and under their own names.