Wine from Rhodes

Rhodes` winemaking tradition dates back to the Neolithic age. Rhodes wine has been famed for thousands of years for its quality and was immensely appreciated by other Greeks and countries like Rome and satellite nations, who avidly imported it in amphorae on a regular basis. Sunken wine trading ships have been found stacked to the rafters with pottery amphorae from Rhodes, some still sealed and containing residues of their original contents.

The island, with the longest summer of any Greek icky, volcanic soil, high sun exposure, constant sea breezes provide excellent conditions for grape growing and ensure that the grapes are of the highest quality. The dominant grapes are the white Athiri and the red Mandelaria, (locally known as Amorgiano), which produce elegant white and red AOC Rhodos wines. A sweet AOC wine from Muscat grapes is also made in Rhodes.

Today you can enjoy wine of a quality that promises an authentic taste of an industry that stretches back in history. Ask the restaurant waiter or shopkeeper about the local wines and you will be surprised at the quality of the authentic Greek wines on offer.

Rhodian wine has a fine reputation so while on the island you should make it a point to visit some of the Rhodes` vineyards and wineries. There are guided tours with wine-tasting organized to most of them. Some of the island`s best known wineries include:

The CAIR Winery
Located just outside of Rhodes town. The label of Cair has become the synonym of Greek Natural Sparkling Wine of Quality. The Company Agricultural Industry of Rodos was started by the Italians in 1928. Now Greek owned and operated, the company produced a special white wine, Rodos 2400, to celebrate that milestone in history. Vineyards are specially selected for the quality of grapes used under each specific label and are constantly monitored. CAIR`s wine is produced on two sites. The original site, in Rhodes city, produces Chevalier, llios and Retsina while the remaining labels now come from the new plant near just outside the city, where the latest technology is employed. It is sold on Rhodes in 500ml crown top bottles and is exported in quantities of 750ml.

Founded in 1923, this worldwide supplier of distilled alcohol moved into wine production in the 1970`s, when the Truantafyllou family built a winery in the mountain village Emponas, on Rhodes. Long term contracts with growers farming the island`s finest hillside vineyards, on the slopes of nearby Mount Attavyros supply Emery with low-yield, dry farmed Athiri.

(Cair and Emery own over 90% of the local grape production.)

Anastasia Triantafillou winery
small traditional local winery close to Petaloudes ("The valley of Butterflies")

In the area you will also find some smaller traditional winemakers: Kounakis, Alexandris, Merkouris