Greece is frequently remembered for a number of iconic events and landmarks whether it is for being the location of first ever Summer Olympics in Athens in 1896, for the infamous Acropolis in Athens, its Mediterranean cuisine and its reputation as being a fantastic holiday destination. However, one aspect of Greece that many often overlook is that Greece is in actual fact, also one of the best providers of wine in the world. The only issue is that these delicious and exciting wines are being left behind on the market, going completely unnoticed.
The main advantage Greek wines have over other more popular wines on the market today, is that they are both some of the oldest yet newest wines on the market today. The country is home to over 300 decadent varieties of wine grapes, many of which cannot be found anywhere else in the world and possess elegant and fruitful flavors. Greek wine’s have been praised and enjoyed since the Ancient Greeks, but due to wars and various political ailments, the country suffered, slowing down the production of its wines. By the 1970’s, the bulk of Greek wines were produced via a factory business which mass produced Greece’s famous retsina wine. Although this is a favored wine by many Greeks, the distinct resin taste was less enjoyed by others although Greek tourism and traditional taverna’s gradually helped increase its popularity with outsiders. Since the beginnings of that factory, the Greek wine industry has flourished, producing wines which follow suit of those once enjoyed by the Gods.
Whereas other producers of wine have followed the popular trends of producing carbon copied Chardonnays and Cabernet Sauvignon wines, Greece have instead, opted to use their own, unique grapes in order to produce wines that are like no other and are completely unique to the country, helping to make the current wine industry much more diverse. To enthusiastic vintners, the best Greek grape is Ksinomavro, or Xinomavro as it is traditionally spelt. This grape only grows in Naoussa where there weather is colder and mountainous which helps to seal in the taste of the grape. The Xinomarvo, or ‘Black Acid’ grape has a distinct cherry flavor with a hint of spice, although it is beloved that this red tastes much better after it has aged over 20 years.
Another popular grape is the Moschofilero which is grown in the Peloponnese area. Again possessing a slightly spiced flavor, this white wine is the perfect accompaniment to aperitifs or seafood dishes that are slightly spices. Following with whites, the Lagorthi is a rare grape which possesses a slight lime taste, whereas the Malagousia is peachier. When it comes to white wine, the Greeks boasts full, fruity, crisp flavors. Red is more favored within Greece and there are plenty to choose from. Nemean reds are renowned for being quite light and fresh at one end and plumy and spicy on the other depending on their age. However, as they age exceptionally well, you are guaranteed to be provided with a full spectrum of spicy, earthy notes and fruity flavors. All Greek wines act as the perfect accompaniment to food so in order to fully enjoy your spicy red or fruity white, inquire as to the best wine to go with your chosen dish.
As Greek wines become more noticed and grow in popularity, they are now much easier to come by when in the larger American states such as New York and Chicago where there are thriving Greek communities. However, when it comes to tasting some of the best Greek wines whilst taking in the scenery of where these delicious grapes were grown, it doesn’t get any better than visiting Greece itself. Well, why not drink as the Gods did?