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Grecia (ES)
Grèce (F)
Greece (GB)
Grecia (I)
Griekenland (N)
Grécia (PO)

The history of Greek viticulture began, so to speak, with the supreme god Zeus with the beautiful Seméle (daughter of Harmonia, goddess of unity), who was born Dionysos led, the god of wine, joy, grapes, fertility and ecstasy. The antiquity Greece, and especially the island due to archaeological finds Crete is considered one of the "cradles of European wine culture". Already in the Mycenaean culture in the 16th century BC (Mycenae = northeastern Peloponnese ) there was viticulture, whereupon found amphorae Clues. Wine was an important part of the drinking culture of everyday life. The Greeks are among the very first to have wine as a valuable commodity.

Already the poet Homer (8th century BC) reports in the Iliad about wine as a house drink for the heroes described. The historians also dealt with wine and viticulture Hesiod (~ 750-680 BC), the philosopher Aristotle (384-322 BC), the naturalist Theophrastus (370-287 BC) and the doctor Galen (129-216). The Greeks brought their vines and wine-growing culture on their colonization trains in the Mediterranean Sicily, after the as Oinotria designated southern Italy, to southern France and to the Black Sea. Many methods have been adopted by the Celts and Romans. The Roman poet Virgil described the variety of grape varieties: "It would be easier to count the grains of sand in Greece than the different grape varieties."

The famous port city Monemvasia on the Peloponnese peninsula was under the rule of Venice a widely used transshipment point for Sweet wines from the Aegean that have been shipped from here to many European countries. The Ottomans ruled the country from the 15th to the middle of the 19th century, during which time lost to the Muslims alcohol ban the wine's importance, it was only continued on a relatively small scale on most islands. It was only a long time after independence in 1830 and the repressing of Turkish influence that people began to deal professionally with viticulture as an economic factor and reactivated numerous vineyards.

Among the pioneers were also some Germans such as Gustav Clauss, who in 1861 was the huge winery that still exists today Achaia Clauss founded. The area under vines doubled until the end of the 19th century, but when in 1898 the phylloxera finally reached Greece, much was wiped out again. The rebuilding was relatively slow, because in the meantime the demand for Greek wine had also decreased significantly. Greek viticulture only experienced a renaissance with the end of the military dictatorship in 1974 and the accession of Greece to the European Union in 1981.

Despite its strong maritime character, Greece has a very high proportion of mountains. The soils made of lime, granite and volcanic rock and the prevailing Mediterranean climate with short, humid winters and dry, hot summers have a favorable effect on viticulture. The often dry autumns usually produce fully ripe grapes with relatively little acidity. The majority of the wine-growing regions are close to the coast with moderating sea breezes. In order to give the wines more structure, vineyards are deliberately created at great heights. The vines can be extended by the growth cycle Build up more extract and achieve higher acid levels. Another effective way to slow down the Maturity date consists in the conscious creation of vineyards on northern slopes. Viticulture is carried out, often on a small scale, all over Greece on the mainland and all larger islands. The appellations ( POP, earlier OPAP and OPE) in red:

Map of Greece

Aegean (With Cyclades )


Ionian Islands






Central Greece

In 2012 the vineyards covered 110,000 hectares with a downward trend (in 2000 there were 131,000 hectares). 3.115 million hectoliters of wine were produced from this (see also under Wine production volumes ). There are around 300 different ones autochthonous Grape varieties that make up 85% of the area. Only in a few cases are foreign varieties permitted in the quality wines. There are also large amounts of table grapes and raisins produced; is the most important variety for this korinthiaki, Viticulture is still characterized by original flavors. Around 60% are alcoholic white wines. 90% of the wines are aged dry. The Blend 2010 (Statistics Kym Anderson ):



Synonyms / Greek name


Savatiano White Aspro, Dobraina Aspri, Kountoura Aspri 9920
Roditis white / pink Alepou Roditis, Arilogos Roditis, Kanellato 8495
Agiorgitiko red Aghiorghitico, Aghiorgitiko, Mavro Nemeas 2905
Kotsifali red Kotrifali, Kotsiphali, Kotzifali 2330
Muscat Blanc / muscatel White Moschato Aspro, Moschoudi 2162
Xinomavro red Mavro Naoussis, Pipoliko, Xinogaltso 1971
romeiko red Loïssima, Romeïco, Romeiko Mavro 1597
Cabernet Sauvignon red - 1550
Moschomavro red Moschato Mavro, Moschogaltso, Xinogaltso 1428
Merlot red - 1248
Liatiko red Aleatiko 1211
Moschofilero white / pink Fileri, Moschophilero 1111
Assyrtiko White Assirtico, Assyrtico, Asyrtico 902
Mandilaria red Amorghiano, Dombrena Mavri, Kontoura 885
Athiri Aspro White Athiri, Athiri Lefko 748
Garnacha Roja White Grenache gris 645
Syrah red Shiraz 641
Chardonnay White - 586
vilana White Velana 579
Mavrud red Mavrouda, Mavroudi 520
Monemvasia White Monemvassia 481
Robola White Robola Aspri 465
Limnio red Mavro Limnio 372
Mavrodaphne red Mavrodafni 345
Trebbiano Toscano White - 297
Fokiano red Fokiana, Fokiano Kokkino 262
Sauvignon Blanc White - 256
Vertzami red Lefkada, Lefkada 239
Debina White Dempina, Ntempina, Zitsa 239
Opsimo Edessis White Karatsova Naousis, Opsimos Lefko 228
Malagousia White Malagouzia 182
Negoska red Mavro Goumenissas, Negkoska 143
Tsaoussi White Tsaousiko, Tsaousia, Tsaousis 135
Asprouda White Asproudi 113
Avgoustiatis red Avgoustiates 108
Kakotrygis White Kako Tryghi 103
Goustolidi White Augoustelidi 68
Alicante Henri Bouschet red - 56
Krassato red Krasata, Krasato 52
Cinsault red - 43
Thrapsathiri White Bechleri, Begleri, Beghleri, Dafnato 31
Cabernet Franc red - 23
Pamid red Pamidi, Pamitis 22
Tempranillo red - 19
Stavroto red Traffic lights, Mavro traffic lights 11
Zakynthino White Zachara, Zacharo, Zakintino 10
Plyto White Plito, Ploto, Pluto 7
Achladi White Perlina d'Inverno ?
Agiomavritiko red - ?
Agoumastos Mavro red Mavro Kalavritino ?
Aïdani Aspro White Aïdani, Aïdani Lefko ?
Aïdani Mavro red Mavraïdano ?
Araklinos red Araclinos, Raklino ?
Areti red - ?
Athiri Mavro red Mavratheri ?
Chondromavro red Chondromavrouda ?
Gaidouria White Gaidouricha, Gaidouriha ?
Kakotrygis White Kako Tryghi, Kakotrygis Kokkino ?
Kartsiotis red Gouchevica, Kartsotes ?
Katsakoulias red Gyftokoritho, Kaltsakouli ?
Kolliniatiko red Bergiotiko, Eugeniko ?
Koriostafylo red Koriostaphylo ?
Korithi Aspro White Korithi Lefko, Korithi Leyko ?
Kotsifoliatiko red - ?
Koutsoumpeli White Koutsoubeli, Koutsoumbeli ?
Mavro red Cipro Nero, Korithi Mavro, Kritiko Mavro ?
Mavrodiates red - ?
Mavroliatis red - ?
Mavro Messenikola red Messenikola Mavro ?
Mavrotragano red - ?
Mavroudi Arachovis red Arachovis ?
Nigrikiotiko red - ?
Petrokoritho Red White Petrokoritho Mavro, Petrokoritho Lefko ?
Petroulianos White Petrolanos, Petrolianos ?
Platani White Platania, Platanos ?
Potamissi White Aspropotamisio ?
Potamissi Mavro red - ?
Priknadi White Prekiadi, Prekna ?
Psilomavro Kalavryton red Kalvritino ?
Ritino red Aretino ?
Roditis Lefkos White Kolokythas Lefkos ?
Rokaniaris White - ?
Sklava White Sklaba, sklabes, sklabos ?
Skopelitiko red Scopelitico, scopelitis ?
Skylopnichtis red Kasteliotiko, Mavros Arkadias ?
Sykiotis red Chiotis, kiotes, kiotis ?
Syriki red Kseriki, Seriki, Syrike, Xerichi ?
Tachtas White Kourou Tachtas, Kour Tachtas ?
Theiako Mavro red - ?
Tourkopoula White Rhoditis Kokkinos, Roditis Kokkinos ?
Vaftra red Vaphtra, Vautra, Vavtra ?
Vidiano White Abidano, Abidiano, Abudiano ?
Vlachiko red Blachiko, Blachos, Vlahico ?
Voudomato red Voidomata, Voidomati, Voidomatis ?
Vradiano red Bradyano, Vradinia ?
Xeromacherouda red Xeromachairouda, Xeromacheirouda ?
Zalovitiko red Zalobitiko ?

The preference for resinated wine, especially the Retsina with around 10% of wine production, is an ancient Greek tradition. Sweet, partially fortified dessert wines are produced on almost all Aegean islands, the best known of which is probably the one Samos from the island of the same name. The anise-flavored schnapps are also known ouzo, as well as the brandy flavored with herbs in a secret mixture (including rose petals) Metaxa, Significant producers are Achaia Clauss. Biblia Chora. Boutari. Calligas. Cambas. Domaine Carras. Gaia. Hatzimichalis. Katsaros. Kechri. Kourtakis. Malamatina. Mercouri. Oenoforos. Papaïoannou. Parparoussis. Pavlidis. Skouras. Spiropoulos. Tsantali and Tselepos, More are listed in the areas.

According to the French model, designations of origin controlled by the Ministry of Agriculture were introduced for the best growing areas from 1971 to 1972: maximum yields per hectare, certain varieties with preference for autochthonous Varieties, minimum must weight, aging regulations and sensory Exams. On enrich The must with sugar is generally permitted, but may increase the alcohol content by a maximum of 2.5% vol. A sweetening up to a maximum of 25% of the sugar contained in the must may be added before and during fermentation. Also one leavening is allowed and is often practiced due to the rather low-acid grapes. Controls are carried out by the KEPO (Central Committee for the Protection of Wine Production).

wine Categories

In August 2009, the EU wine market regulations with fundamental changes in wine names and quality levels became valid for all member countries (see also under quality system ). The traditional terms OPAP, OPE and OKP can still be used alternatively, but most winegrowers use the new term POP:

  • Oinos (formerly Epitrapezios Oinos or table wine ) = Wine
  • PGE = Topikos Oinos or country wine
  • POP or alternatively OPAP, OPE, OKP = quality wine

Oinos / Οίνος : wines without a narrow designation of origin. This lowest quality level is mostly blends from different growing areas.

PGE / ΠΓΈ (Prostatevomenis Geografikis Endixis / Προστατευόμενης Γεωγραφικής Ένδειξης) : A country wine with a protected geographical indication. There are around 80 rural wine areas that can span an entire region, a district or a municipal area. One of the best known areas is Agioritikos on the "Holy Mountain" Athos (Chalkidikí peninsula).

POP / ΠOΠ (Prostatevomenis Onomasías Proelefsis / Προστατευόμενης Ονομασίας Προέλευσης) : A quality wine with a protected designation of origin. Alternatively, however, the old names or quality levels OPAP, OPE and OKP are also possible.

OPAP / ΟΠΑΠ (Onomasía Proelefséos Anotéras Piótitos / Ονομασία Προελεύσεως Ανωτέρας Ποιότητος) : For these quality wines with "designation of origin of higher quality" maximum yield, minimum alcohol content and bottle content, among other things, are prescribed, maturity. Up to the 2015 vintage, the OPAP wines were red banderole characterized.

OPE / ΟΠΕ (Onomasía Proelefséos Eleghoméni / Ονομασία Προελεύσεως Ελεγχόμενη) : These quality wines with a “controlled designation of origin” are subject to the same conditions as OPAP wines. In addition, there are higher requirements regarding the sugar content, With that Sweet wines from the historical areas Kefallonia. Limnos. Patras. Rhodes and Samos declared. Either it is "natural sweet wines" fueled with wine spirit or "made from dried grapes" natural sweet Wines ”, the one Trockenbeerenauslese correspond. Up to the 2015 vintage, the OPE wines were marked with a blue band.

OKP / ΟκΠ (Onomasía Katá Parádosi / Ονομασία κατά παράδοση = Traditional Appellation) : A special predicate for wines that are protected from origin and made with traditional wine press methods. There are only two of them Retsina and the one on the island Zakynthos produced Verdea,

Kava (cava) : Description (German cellar or "cellar") for a long-standing wine of the highest quality. White wines must be stored for two years (at least 6 months in barrel and six months in bottle), red wines for three years (at least 6 months in new oak or 1 year in used oak and 2 years in bottle).

Reserve (Epilegmenos) and Grande Reserve (Idika Epilegmenos) : Only permitted for quality wines (OPAP and OPE). Reserve applies to white wines with two years (for 6 months in barrel and 6 months in bottle) and for red wines with three years of storage (same minimum). Grande Reserve applies to white wines with at least three years (for 1 year in barrel and 1 year in bottle) and for red wines with at least four years (for 2 years in barrel and 2 years in bottle).

Greece map: From Pitichinaccio - own work, CC BY 3.0 , link
edited by Norbert FJ Tischelmayer 2/2018

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