Wine production in Greece dates back at least 4000 years, the oldest archaeological founding of grapes was in the Peloponnese region, and especially in Nemea. The wine was always a part of Greek tradition, from ancient times till our days. According to mythology, the Atreides were particularly partial to Philasian wine (from the plain of Philius, the ancient name of Nemea). Today, Nemea is the biggest vineyard in Greece, producing some of the best wines in Peloponnese region. The types of wine such as Agiorgitiko, Moschofilero, Mavrodaphne, and Roditis.
They are awarded at major international competitions, claiming a place in the global market, as they are exported in large numbers. In the Nemea region, they are some 3000 hectares that produce mostly Agiorgitiko red wine, the production accounts for a high percentage of the country’s total production.
The plain, hillsides, and uplands, at altitudes of 260 to 800 meters, are surrounded by archaeological sites such as ancient Nemea, where according to mythology, Hercules killed the lion. With the Nemea wine tasting tour a visitor except tasting wine can see the temple of Zeus and the Stadium, thanks to archaeologist Steven G. Miller who has continuously worked for more than 30 years, he discovered the Stadium and reconstructed some columns of the temple.
Another interesting area is Mantineia, one of the coolest Greek vineyard zones that produce Moschofilero in around 1000 hectares, an aromatic white wine that has found fans all over the world. In Mantineia, a visitor can see the ancient theatre which dates back to the 4th century BC, remains of the ancient agora, Roman baths, and Bouleuterion.
Best wines in Peloponnese region
Changing prefecture, we come to Achaia. The main variety of vineyards here is the white grape used to make the unique, sweet PDO Muscat of Rio-Patras, as well as the PDO Mavrodaphne whose history began in 1873, when in a tower house inside the city of Patra the Bavarian Gustav Clauss was inspired by the black(Mavro) eyes of his fiancée, Daphne. Today the Mavrodaphne grape is cultivated to produce traditional sweet, long-aged wines.
Close by to Achaia, there are the mountainous vineyards of Aigialeia, where Roditis – the most planted white grape variety in Greece- is masterfully transformed into refreshing crisp whites.
Continuing southward, we reach beautiful Laconia, the land of Sparta. In Monemvasia where someone can admire medieval Byzantine castles, we meet Malvasia, which once again is claiming its rightful place, now with PDO certification. Visitors to this area will also have the opportunity to try several other interesting wines made from the alluring Kydonitsa and the bolder Petroulianos varieties that are gradually making inroads.
Below you can see an infographic about wine production in Greece.