Greek viticultural history dates back at least to the 16th century BC. Today, Greece ranks in the upper middle range as a wine producer worldwide, with a vineyard area of around 117,000 hectares (2007) and a volume of around 3.5 million hectolitres (2007). Most of the vineyards are located near the coast, although vineyards are often found at higher altitudes. The country is divided into a total of nine wine-growing regions, in which about 300 domestic as well as international grape varieties are cultivated.
|The wine regions of Greece (Source: Pitichinaccio/Wikipedia)|
Northern Greece has four wine-growing regions: Thrace in the northeast, Macedonia in the north, and Epirus and Thessaly in the northwest. The total cultivated area is around 10,000 hectares (2011), and the natural conditions for viticulture are basically favourable: a temperate, sufficiently humid climate and fertile soils create good growing conditions for the vegetation. The four northern Greek wine regions, which are described in more detail below, sometimes have grape varieties that only grow in a small area and produce growths with their very own character. Autochthonous grape varieties indigenous to the whole of Greece are the red varieties Xinomavro and Limnio and the white varieties Assyrtiko, Athiri, Roditis, Malagousia and Moschato.