Cyprus is an island steeped in history and tradition and it boasts a long and rich winemaking heritage. Nestled amidst the majestic Troodos Mountains, a tapestry of fertile valleys and rolling hills, lies a thriving wine region that has captivated wine enthusiasts for centuries. Embark on a journey through Cyprus’ winemaking heartland, where ancient practices converge with modern techniques to produce wines that are both elegant and soul-satisfying.
A Brief History of Troodos Winemaking
The story of winemaking in Cyprus can be traced back to the Bronze Age, with evidence of viticulture dating as far back as 2,300 BC. The ancient Greeks and Romans brought their own winemaking techniques to the island, further enriching the tapestry of Cypriot wines. Today, the Troodos Mountains are home to over 50 wineries, producing a wide range of red, white, rosé, and dessert wines that showcase the island’s unique terroir.
As you make your way on the winding roads of the Troodos Mountains, you’ll encounter charming villages with traditional stone houses and vineyards that cascade down the slopes. Each winery has its own distinct character and story to tell, offering visitors a glimpse into the passion and dedication of Cypriot winemakers.
Here are just a few:
Renowned for its rich red wines, particularly the Kyperounta Commandaria, a Cypriot specialty with a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) status. The Kyperounta Commandaria is made from a blend of indigenous grapes, including Xynisteri, Maratheftiko, and Cabernet Sauvignon, and is aged for a minimum of three years in oak barrels. It is a full-bodied, complex wine with notes of dried fruits, spice, and tobacco.
A family-owned winery that produces a range of wines, including its signature Aphrodite’s Kiss, a full-bodied red wine made with indigenous Cypriot grapes. Aphrodite’s Kiss is aged for 18 months in oak barrels and is characterized by its rich black cherry flavors, hints of vanilla, and a lingering finish.
A winery with a focus on sustainability, producing wines that are both high-quality and environmentally friendly. Zenon Winery uses organic farming methods and utilizes solar power to reduce its environmental impact. The winery produces a variety of wines, including whites, reds, and rosés, all of which showcase the terroir of the Troodos Mountains.
A traditional winery nestled in the picturesque village of Omodos, known for its sweet wines and traditional Cypriot cuisine. Omodos Winery produces a range of sweet wines, including Commandaria and Muscat of Alexandria, using traditional methods passed down through generations. The winery also offers a selection of Cypriot cheeses, meats, and pastries to complement its wines.
As you conclude your wine-filled adventure in the Troodos Mountains, you’ll carry with you not just memories of exquisite wines but also a deeper appreciation for the passion of its winemakers. Don’t forget to raise a glass to them!