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A Journey Through Attica’s Diverse PGI Wines

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Unveiling the region's viticultural excellence.

Nestled in the heart of Greece, the Attica region produces wines worth exploring, offering a terroir unlike any other. Boasting a diverse range of grape varieties, the region is home to the PGI Attiki (ΠΓΕ Αττική), PGI Retsina of Attiki (ΠΓΕ Ρετσίνα Αττικής), PGI Slopes of Kithaironas (ΠΓΕ Πλαγιές Κιθαιρώνα) and PGI Markopoulo (ΠΓΕ Μαρκόπουλο) white and red wines.

The region has a long winemaking history that stretches back over thousands of years, and its wines have been revered by philosophers, poets, and royalty throughout this time, demonstrating the integral role that wine has played in Greece’s rich history. Whilst Attica’s winemakers have worked hard to maintain traditional methods and continue to cultivate ancient grape varieties, they have also adopted new technologies and techniques, resulting in impressive and unique wine styles. Naturally, the uniqueness of the region’s wine style also owes much to its unique terroir.

A distinctive terroir

With its hot, dry climate that regularly sees temperatures of 25 to 30 degrees celsius and minimal rainfall, the region’s grapes are at low risk of disease, and chemical spraying is rarely required, making these vineyards ideal for sustainable viticultural practices.

Proximity to the sea is vital for the region’s vineyards to thrive and also shapes the character of local wines. Cool coastal breezes and the diverse range of microclimates provided by the Attica Peninsula’s hilly landscapes offer relief from the heat. The varied terroir, from sun-drenched plains to sheltered valleys, provides a tapestry of diverse soils, elevations and exposures – a perfect environment for grape cultivation.

Yielding impressive variety

The Attiki region consists of a multitude of small vineyard holdings which average only 0.9ha in size, with a total area under vine of just over 6,200ha, which is split amongst 7,000 small growers. The Savatiano varietal accounts for 89% of the region’s total vineyard yield.

Attiki is also home to a number of other white grape varieties, including Roditis – the region’s second most-planted grape variety (at 2.5%), the increasingly popular Assyrtiko (which accounts for 2% of plantings), and Malagousia (representing about 1.3%). Red grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Agiorgitiko are also cultivated.

Each one of this diverse group of grape varieties contributes its unique character to the final product, however it’s Savatiano, the region’s signature white grape that takes centre stage.  Savatiano displays bright acidity, citrusy aromas and delicate floral notes. Malagousia and Assyrtiko also shine, bringing their own vibrant flavours and crisp profiles to Attica’s white wines.

On the red wine front, Agiorgitiko, known as the ‘Blood of Hercules’, reigns supreme. Its deep red hues and velvety textures are accompanied by luscious red fruit flavours and a hint of spice. The other red varieties – Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot – add depth and complexity to Attica’s red wine offerings.

Tradition meets modern winemaking 

While Attica’s winemakers honour their ancestral traditions, they have embraced modern winemaking techniques to bring innovation and refinement to their craft. Meticulous vineyard management, hand harvesting and gentle pressing techniques help to ensure that the grapes express their distinctive characteristics in every bottle.

The area maintains many old vines, dating back to the post phylloxera plantings in the late 1950s. They are often gobelet-trained to deal with the local conditions, and the low rainfall combined with the poor limestone soils means that the vines’ roots are forced to grow deep into the subsoil to reach the water and nutrients they need. The resulting wines are concentrated and full of minerals, with great ageing potential.

Culinary Pairings

Attica’s PGI wines are not only a delight on their own but also perfectly complement Greece’s renowned cuisine. The region’s white wines pair exquisitely with fresh seafood, salads and light Mediterranean dishes, while the robust reds harmonise with hearty meat dishes, stews and aged cheeses. Attica’s PGI wines are not just complementary to a meal but also offer the opportunity to appreciate and savour the rich tapestry of flavours that Greek gastronomy has to offer.

So, raise your glass and toast  Attica, a region that continues to captivate wine enthusiasts with its extraordinary PGI wines. Let every sip transport you to the sun-kissed vineyards, ancient ruins and vibrant culture of this remarkable region of Greece.

Discover more about the PGI wines of Attica

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