Exploring the Types of Grapes in Greece: A Guide to Varieties and Uses

Greece has a rich history of grape cultivation and winemaking, producing a variety of grape varieties. Here are some common types of grapes grown in Greece:

1. Assyrtiko

Assyrtiko is a white grape variety native to the island of Santorini. It is known for its vibrant acidity, citrusy flavors, and mineral notes. Assyrtiko is used to produce both dry and sweet wines and is considered one of Greece’s finest white grape varieties.

2. Agiorgitiko

Agiorgitiko, also known as St. George, is a red grape variety primarily grown in the Nemea region of the Peloponnese. It produces medium-bodied wines with flavors of red fruits, spices, and gentle tannins. Agiorgitiko is versatile and used for both single-varietal wines and blending.

3. Xinomavro

Xinomavro is a red grape variety grown primarily in the northern regions of Macedonia and Naoussa. It is often referred to as Greece’s answer to Nebbiolo due to its high acidity and tannins. Xinomavro wines are known for their complex flavors of dark fruits, earth, and herbs.

4. Moschofilero

Moschofilero is a white grape variety grown in the Peloponnese and particularly in the region of Mantinia. It produces aromatic wines with floral and citrus notes, often with a touch of spice. Moschofilero is used to make both dry and sparkling wines.

5. Aglianico

Aglianico, although originally from Italy, is also grown in Greece, primarily in the region of Macedonia. It is a red grape variety that yields wines with intense flavors of black fruits, tobacco, and spices. Aglianico wines are often full-bodied and structured.

6. Malagousia

Malagousia is a white grape variety that was nearly extinct until it was rediscovered and revived in the 1980s. It is now grown in various regions across Greece, including Macedonia and Thessaly. Malagousia produces aromatic wines with exotic fruit flavors and floral notes.

7. Mavrodaphne

Mavrodaphne is a red grape variety primarily grown in the Peloponnese region. It is used to produce the sweet fortified wine known as Mavrodaphne of Patras. This wine has a rich and sweet character with flavors of dried fruits, caramel, and spices.

These are just a few examples of the many grape varieties grown in Greece. The country’s diverse terroir, climate, and winemaking traditions contribute to the wide range of flavors and styles found in Greek wines.