ALREADY KNOW YOUR NEXT DESTINATION?
DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE AUDIOGUIDE
Santorini is famous for many reasons: its sumptuous beaches, its volcanic landscapes, its sunsets and of course its delicious wines. You only need to take a stroll around the island to appreciate that vineyards form an essential part of the landscape, culture and identity, as well as a growing tourist attraction.
If we go back a few thousand years, we can see that wine production has been one of the main activities on Santorini for centuries. Its origins date back more than 3500 years, and in 1700 BC trade was experiencing a major boom and had an enviable reputation. This tradition has been passed from father to son, leading to a rich wine heritage.
The microclimate of the island and its lava-rich fertile porous soil are key to the distinctive flavour and quality of the grapes. These are used to produce exquisite wines such as Nykteri, Vinsanto and Brusco. If you want to sample these, numerous wineries open their doors to the public to demonstrate the winemaking process and offer wine-tasting sessions.
These include Canava Roussos, one of the oldest wineries on the island and operational since 1836. This is a family business that has passed its secrets to creating a memorable product from generation to generation. Another interesting winery worth visiting is Hatzidakis, since it is located in an underground cellar that is hidden by vast vineyards. Boutari winery, which is owned by the famous Greek wine maker, is also very popular.
Whether you choose to visit a winery or prefer to enjoy a fine glass of wine on a terrace overlooking magnificent views, you mustn't miss out on two different varieties: Nykteri and Vinsanto.
Nykteri is a dry and lively white wine, sharp like a Riesling and sensual like a sparkling wine. When drunk young, the sulphur-rich volcanic nature of the soil is revealed.
If you opt for the famous Vinsanto, you'll discover one of the oldest wines in the world, since it was already being produced in Homer's time. It is a naturally sweet wine. Vinsanto means "wine of Santorini" and not "holy wine", as it is translated in Tuscany, where a similar wine is made.
And if you're curious at heart, don't forget to try ouzo, a traditional liqueur with a flavour very similar to anisette and licorice, which the locals drink during family celebrations. Cheers!