With the London Greek Wine Festival just around the corner – we can’t think of a better way to spend the weekend than immersing yourself in all things food and wine – two of our favourite things! But where did Greek wine originate from?
Wine has been an important part of Greek Culture for over 4000 years – the Ancient Greeks believed wine had great nutritional value (how smart), so it rapidly became part of their daily life. Winemaking had a huge impact on the economy too, not least because the wealth of an entire region often hinged on their vineyards and the wine they produced. The reputation of the wine depended on that of the whole region, not on the individual producer or vineyard, so rather than competing with their neighbours, it initially encouraged winemakers to work together to ensure their region created the very best wine possible.
Poets were the wine critics of the time, and took it upon themselves to ‘review’ and admire certain wines. Those looked upon favourably would then be mentioned in their works, literally going down in history! Aristotle mentioned ‘Lemnian wine’, which is the equivalent of modern-day Lemnió, a red wine with herbal hints, making Lemnió the oldest known today!
Greece introduced winemaking techniques to their colonies in Italy and Sicily around 8th Century BC, and later to France and Spain. A large amount of Italian grapes (such as Aleatico, Greco di Tufo, Malvasia di Candia, Moscato and Moscatelli) are all of Greek origin.
The Greek wine industry today has improved due to large investments in wine making technology, with native winemakers being trained in the best wine schools, so that Greek wines continue to gain the recognition they deserve. Greek wine is unique due to more than 300 grape varieties being grown, some of which have been cultivated since ancient times!
With 130 wines , this year’s London Greek Wine Festival is the perfect way to immerse yourself in wine history, delicious Greek food (who doesn’t love souvlaki and spanakopita?!) Oh, and lots of WINE! For £10 – it’s a no brainer! Tickets available here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/london-greek-wine-festival-tickets-26054704322#tickets