Peloponnese features the largest vineyard coverage in Greece, approximately 30% of the country’s hectarage. Starring an incredible array of fascinating terroirs, numerous indigenous varieties and quality-minded producers that elevate Greek wine at the top.
Nowadays, Peloponnese is home to some of the most characterful native varieties; the benchmarks here being the hedonistic Agiorgitiko from Nemea region and the exotic Moschofilero with its singular perfume from the Mantinia plateau. Other varieties such as the mineral Roditis, the elegant, scented with quince fruit, Kidonitsa, the textural and refined Mavrodaphne, the ethereal Black of Kalavrita or some of the best Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah grown in Greece, are marvelous examples of how diverse Peloponnese’s offerings can be. Some of the most vivid wines are produced in the high altitude vineyards of Aigialeia rising up to 1000 meters, in specific villages of Nemea such as Koutsi and Asprokampos, in the plateau of Mantinia and the Messinia region for international varieties. Yet there are many more wine destinations to explore such as the Mani.
Nemea is one of Greece’s two most important PDO zones, together with Naoussa in northern Greece. In this region that spreads over 2,200 hectares, the red Agiorgitiko variety dominates, planted in a range of altitudes that go up to 900m. This grape produces hedonistic wines, distinguishable by their fruity aromas and signature velvety textures, making them particularly attractive to consumers. Some of the finest examples, which are also age-worthy, come from the poor calcareous soil of the village of Koutsi, at an altitude between 400m and 600m, while the best vintages are achieved when the Agiorgitiko has a chance to ripen before the autumn rains. Asprokambos on the other side of ancient Nemea, with some terroirs climbing up to 900m, also shows excellent potential for the production of firm and structured wines, provided ideal ripening conditions can be met. Moreover Nemea is a mosaic of different exposures, soils and altitudes, therefore much more discussion is expected in the near future for its numerous terroirs: Koutsi, Leondio, Gymno, Ancient Nemea, Xirokambos, Ancient Kleones and Asprokampbos.
Mantinia is situated in a plateau in Arcadia in the heart of Peloponnese, with an average altitude of 650m. Soils here are poor with good drainage and a relatively cool climate with snow in the winter and frequent rains throughout the year. Mantinia is mentioned by Homer and produces dry PDO whites and elegant sparkling wines mainly from Moschofilero and some plantings of Asprouda. Moschofilero which can be found exclusively here stands out for its exotic fruity and floral aromas balanced by refreshing acidity. These are light, elegant wines that are perfect as an aperitif or served with a range of summer dishes and salads.