Traditional wines


The Greek winegrowing domain is comprised of contemporary as well as historical vineyards in different vine growing zones, where a wealth of native varieties are cultivated. In many of those areas, unique winegrowing practices continue to be applied in the production of one-of-a-kind Greek  traditional wines.

Certain traditional wines bear the indication “Traditional Designation” which amounts to a legal safeguard of their name and production method. There are two Greek wines entitled to bear that indication:

• Retsina (produced throughout Greece but mostly in Central Greece)
• Verdea  (a traditional wine of Zakynthos)

Apart from these two, there are, however, several other  traditional wines produced in various other Greek regions such as:

• Nychteri (PDO Santorini) on Santorini
• Marouvas in western Crete
• The “air-dried” wines of Siatista in western Macedonia

Traditional wines had long been consumed locally in their areas of production. As time went by, however, some of them became known and appreciated in other parts of Greece and abroad. Today some are still produced through vinification practices evocative of the past but there are also those which while maintainaing their traditional character also show a more modern profile, thanks to modern technologies. Last, there are also wines whose name only denotes a link to tradition.

A characteristic type of  traditional wine encountered in many parts of Greece and produced steadily for centuries is that of straw wines (vin liastos). Santorini’s Vinsanto is among them.

In all cases, Greek traditional wines are distinct and unique, expressing not only their terroir and grape variety of origin, but also the history of the vineyards and the people who have created those vineyards and continue tendng to them.