first reference to the wine tradition of the Peloponnese came from
Homer who called it Ampeloessa, meaning "full of vines."
Neither wars nor phylloxera were able to stop the production of
wine here in one of the most historic wine regions of Greece. Spread
throughout hillsides, plains and plateaus, the vineyards of the
Peloponnese are known for their diversity and complexity.
far from the pretty town of Nafplion
we find Nemea, the most important
AOC region in southern Greece for the production of red wines. Here
the Agiorghitiko grape is used
and produces wines famous for their deep red color, complex aroma
and long, velvety palate.
In the high altitudes of Mantinia,
the noble Moschofilero grape is
cultivated producing the AOC wines, Mantinia.
The continental climate together with the poor, but well drained
soil also leads to the production of some exciting aromatic white
the northwestern part of the Peloponnese is the viticultural region
of Patras. Four AOC wines are produced
in this area: a savory dry white named Patra, made from the Roditis
grape, two delicious aromatic white dessert wines, Moschato Patron
and Moschato Rio of Patras, and the popular Mavrodaphne, a fortified
red wine made from the Mavrodaphne
and Korinthiaki grapes.
Antonopoulos Vineyards was founded by the late, Konstantinos Antonopoulos and his vision lives on and provides inspiration for owner, Yiannis Halikias, who continues the tradition of producing cutting edge wines. The vineyards, located just south of Patras on the slopes of the Achaia mountains, consist of unique indigenous varieties and well adapted French grapes which combine to produce wines that continue to receive the international recognition and acclaim they deserve.
Over the last fifteen years, the Burgundy trained winemaker George
Skouras has brought his Domaine to the forefront of Greek Estates
producing wines with native and international grapes. Skouras has
built one winery near Argos, another in the bucolic village of Gymno,
in the AOC region of Nemea and a third is under construction.
This modern winery and most of the vineyards are located in the
heart of Arcadia in Ancient Mantinia with other vineyards in Nemea.
The Spiropoulos family, closely associated with winemaking since
1860, has also been pioneering in the production of organic viticulture
since 1993. Their high quality wines are produced under the supervision
of UC-Davis trained Apostolos Spiropoulos.
At the foothills of Mount Parnon, near ancient Tegea the Burgundy
trained Yiannis Tselepos built his winery. After carefully selecting
the most suitable "terroirs" he planted native and international
varieties with the intention of producing contemporary style, elegant
Gaia was founded in 1994 by Leon Karatsalos and Yiannis Paraskevopoulos with a commitment to producing quality wine from the unique indigenous grapes of their native Greece. Both owners have degrees in agronomy from the University of Thessaloniki and Paraskevopoulos also received a Ph.D in Oenology from the University of Bordeaux II. The first wine they produced in 1994 was the AOC Santorini wine, Thalassitis that has become one of their signature wines. Their first vintage yielded less than 10,000 bottles, but as its popularity has grown the production of Thalassitis, made from the noble Assyrtiko grape, now exceeds 100,000 bottles a year.
Back then, in 1963, the Lafkiotis family, started making wine using some of the best Greek varieties found in Ancient Cleonai of Corinthia.
Today, supported by the experience of 40 years, the family selects the most proper vineyards, makes wine in modern facilities and ages the wines in French, oak barrels in environment-controlled cellars. Germans, Swedes, Belgians, Austrians, Americans, Dutch and Danish enjoy the Lafkiotis wines, in their countries.
In the western Peloponnese, near ancient Olympia is the family owned
Mercouri Estate with 150 years of history in the production of wine,
currants and olive oil. Vassilis and Christos Kanellakopoulos, fourth
generation of the Mercouri family, have revived the winemaking tradition
of this historic property with the production of distinctively branded
On the beautiful slopes of Aegio, we find the Oenoforos winery built
on five levels, utilizing gravity in order to provide a natural
flow for the must. The site was chosen by the Bordeaux trained winemaker
Angelos Rouvalis after extensive research of the surrounding area
and neighboring vineyards. Rouvalis and his partner Yiannis Karabatsos
have had a very positive influence on the development of the wine
growing region of Aegialia.
Located in Ancient Nemea, just steps from the temple of Zeus is
the Palivos Estate. George Palivos, a third generation winemaker,
has carefully selected his vineyards in the heart of Nemea for the
production of high quality wines made from local and international
Yiannis Vatistas vineyards lie on the plants of Vion and the hillsides of Pantanassa next to the castle of Monemvasia, where the famous wine Malvazia originates.
In the vineyards you can find the local varieties Petrouliano, Asproudi, Thrapsa, Mavroudi, Monemvasia, Kydonitsa, Roditi, Mandilaria as well as, Assyrtiko, Aedani, Athiri, Agiorgitiko, Malagousia, along with the noble foreign varieties Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet and Merlot.