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From Vine to Glass: The Allure of Greek Wine in Lesvos

From Vine to Glass: The Allure of Greek Wine in Lesvos

Greek wine is known for its quality and diversity, but there is one island that is often overlooked by wine lovers: Lesvos. Lesvos island is a hidden gem for Greek wine, with a wide variety of wines to offer, from crisp whites to bold reds.

Lesvos wine is produced from an assortment of grape varieties, including Kalloniatiko, Fokiano and Chydiriotiko. Kalloniatiko is characterised by aromas of rose, forest fruits and cinnamon, while there is a strong presence of minerality due to the volcanic soil which gives it a long aftertaste.

Fokiano typically offers flavours of dark fruits, subtle spices, and balanced acidity, creating a harmonious and robust red wine. Chydiriotiko can be red, orange and white too! In the red version it gives charming aromas of cherry and raspberry, enriched with notes of rose, honey and cinnamon. The orange version is characterised by notes of citrus marmalade and the white combines flowers and citrus fruit.

If you are looking for a unique and exciting wine experience, then Lesvos is the perfect place for you!

What is the history of Greek wine?

Greek wine has a long and storied history that dates back to ancient times. The Greeks were one of the first civilisations to cultivate grapes and make wine. Wine was an important part of Greek culture and religion. It was used in religious ceremonies and was also considered a symbol of hospitality.

The earliest evidence of winemaking in Greece comes from the island of Crete, where archaeologists have found evidence of wine production dating back to 6,500 BC. By the time of the ancient Greeks, winemaking was widespread throughout the country. The Greeks were responsible for developing many of the winemaking techniques that are still used today, such as the use of oak barrels to age wine.

Today, Greek wine is enjoying a revival. There are now over 3,000 wineries in Greece, and the country is producing some of the world's best wines.

How can I learn about Lesvos wine on my trip to the island?

Nestled among olive groves, historic villages, and pristine beaches, Lesvos' wineries, renowned for their exquisite Lesvos wine grapes, offer an unforgettable experience for wine enthusiasts. Here you will be taken on a journey through some of the island's finest wineries, where you can savour the unique flavours of locally grown Greek wine.

Oinoforos Winery: located in Mytilene, this winery is renowned for its dedication to producing high-quality wines that showcase the unique terroir of the region. Take a sip of dry red or white, semi-sweet red or rosé wine from Lesvos’ unique grape varieties - Mandilaria, Fokiano and many more delicious Lesvos wine.

Akritos Oinos: at the village of Revma, in western Lesvos, the winery of Akritos Oinos produces a very delicate red wine from one of the Lesvos wine grapes named Chydiriotiko. Planted in privately owned volcanic vineyards, this Greek wine has a fresh taste with strong aromas.

Methymnaeos Winery: the producer of Methymnaeos, Yiannis Lambrou, creates three types of Chydiriotiko wines (dry white, red and orange) at Chydira village in Lesvos. Combining honey with forest fruits or flowers with citrus fruit, every single one of these wines will make your tasting experience unforgettable!

Ifestio Anemotias: in the volcanic vineyards of Anemotia, a truly exceptional and one-of-a-kind Lesvos wine is meticulously crafted, embodying the essence of this charming area in every exquisite sip. Red or white, Kalloniatiko or Asyrtiko, every wine enthusiast's desires are not only met but exceeded!

Real Lesvos can arrange everything for you, from guided tours of local wineries to wine tasting, ensuring you have a comprehensive and enriching journey through Lesvos' vibrant wine culture.

When is the best time to visit Lesvos for wine tourism?

Lesvos island is an undiscovered destination for Greek wine tourism, a hidden treasure ready to be explored by wine enthusiasts! Lesvos offers a delightful blend of natural beauty, rich history, and exceptional wine experiences.

Whether you're exploring the vineyards, enjoying wine tastings, or immersing yourself in the island's culture, Lesvos promises a truly unforgettable journey for wine enthusiasts and travellers alike. Explore all the wine-related activities that Lesvos has to offer below:

Wine Festivals: Lesvos hosts wine festivals throughout the year, where visitors can sample wines from different wineries, enjoy food pairings, and learn about the history and culture of Greek wine.

Wine and Food Pairing: enjoy traditional Greek cuisine paired with local wines. Many restaurants on the island offer wine lists that feature Lesvos wines, and the pairing of fresh seafood with local white wines is a must-try experience.

Wine Shopping: don't forget to buy some bottles of your favourite Lesvos wines to take home as souvenirs or gifts!

Lesvos wine festivals

The island hosts a few festivals throughout the year including wine festivals. Some of the most popular Lesvos wine festivals include:

Pamfila Wine Festival: a wine festival with live music, food and drinks during August at Pamfila.

Viticulture Festival in Anemotia: this festival takes place in the village of Anemotia. Enjoy three days of cultural events, activities and Lesvos wine of course!

Lesvos Food Fest: one of the biggest festivals on the island in July where recipes are shared, cooking workshops are held and there are lots of tastings of local produce, and of course music and wine!

Greek wine tasting

Tasting Greek wine is a sensory journey that unveils the nuances of these distinct grape varieties. Here's how to embark on a Greek wine-tasting adventure:

Prepare for discovery: approach Greek wine with an open mind and a sense of curiosity. Be prepared to encounter indigenous grape varieties you may have never heard of before.

Explore indigenous grapes: embrace the opportunity to taste grape varieties like Assyrtiko, Xinomavro, and Malagousia that are uniquely Greek.

Engage the senses: observe the wine's colour, swirling it gently in the glass. Inhale deeply to catch the aromas.

Savour the palate: take a sip and let the wine spread across your palate. Pay attention to the balance of acidity, tannins (if it's a red wine) and overall texture.

Consider food pairings: Greek wine is often crafted to complement the local cuisine. Experiment with pairing it with classic Greek dishes and observe how the flavours interact.

Embrace tradition and innovation: while Greece is steeped in tradition, contemporary winemakers are also pushing boundaries and experimenting with new techniques. Explore both classic and modern varieties of Greek wine.

Raise your glass and embark on a tasting adventure that celebrates both tradition and innovation, all within the context of Greece's remarkable vinicultural heritage.

Lesvos is a hidden gem for wine lovers. The island has a long and rich history of winemaking, and Lesvos wine is known for its quality and diversity. There are a variety of wine tours and tastings, as well as Lesvos wine festivals and other wine-related events.

So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip to Lesvos today and discover the hidden gem of Greek wine! Get in touch with Real Lesvos and we can help plan your stay.

Photo credit: Aphrodite Vati-Mariola

Mark Walker

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