Wine-tasting in Santorini – Santorini Wine Tours:
Santorini is famous for its sunset and its unique caldera, but the island now has a wine-growing industry that should not be overlooked. When dining out in Santorini, we noticed that all the wines offered are Greek wines and many of these are produced on the island.
A Winery Visit
We saw a brochure in our room for Domaine Sigalas and as it was within walking distance from our accommodation in Oia, we paid a visit to this Santorini winery. Once we got off the main road and walked downhill towards the vineyards in the distance, the scenery was very peaceful and there was hardly anyone in the area.
As we walked past the stretches of vineyards there were no signposts to give a clue as to whether we were nearing our destination. Just before we arrived at what we guessed to be Sigalas, we met Sandra and Ron (from Canada) who were also looking for the winery.
Domaine Sigalas Winery
Domaine Sigalas was founded in 1991 and have have some 2,200 hectares of vineyards, growing different grape varieties. On arrival at the winery, we were given a presentation of the nine wines that Sigalas produce. We were asked to select the wines that we wished to taste and these are brought out to the garden where we sat under the pergola and tasted the wines while enjoying views of the vineyards. The winery charges a small fee for the tasting, depending on the wines chosen. We mostly tried the whites, the Rose and the Sigalas Vinsanto.
The wines that we tried were all very young and didn’t have any complex bouquet – they were more like quaffing wines. We thought that they should have been served a little more chilled as in the hot Santorini weather, everything heats up quickly. My favourite at Sigalas is the Vinsanto, a dessert wine that is produced from sun-dried grapes.
Other Santorini Wineries
Santos is the largest wine producer in Santorini and according to Sandra, this is where the Santorini wine tours stop at. Other Santorini wineries include:
- Canava Roussos – a family winery that has existed since 1836
- Estate Argyros – whose Argyros Vinsanto 1987 is reputed to be the best Vinsanto produced in Santorini
- Gaia Winemakers – previously a tomato factory, this winery is on the eastern side of Santorini, near the airport
- Gavalas Vineyard – a family winery that has been dealing with wine for more than 300 years
- Hatzidakis Winery – one of the most successful new winemakers in Santorini
- Koutsogiannopoulos Winery – a winery with an interesting history. A special feature of this winery is its museum which presents the history of the Santorini wines and wine-growers from 1660 until today.
To get to all these vineyards you do need to have a rental car. But if you drive, be careful about drinking. Alterntively, you can join a Santorini winery tour which can be booked with any of the sightseeing agencies on the island.Ideas anyone?