Many visitors and ex pats tend to order "village wine" in a carafe which is frankly quite horrible served straight from a carton or worse from a huge plastic container. The wine is oxidised before it ever reaches your glass and then people wonder why it tastes like vinegar!
- Cyprus is one of the oldest wine producers in Europe, with a recent archaeological discovery dating the first wine production nearly 6000 years ago to 3500 BC.
- Most Cyprus wine is made from indigenous grape varieties.
White wine comes mainly from the Xynisteri grape which produces a fresh, crisp white, best drunk young. Red wine is made from a variety of local grapes such as Mavro, Opthalmo and the unique tasting Maratheftiko. Whilst most red wines are also best drunk when young, more mature wines are now being produced, blended with other grape varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Mataro and aged in oak casks.
- There are 4 "big" producers of Cyprus wine. They offer a wide range of acceptable wines but we still think the best Cyprus wine comes from the smaller local wineries.
- The smaller regional wineries produce between 50,000 and 500,000 bottles annually.
- Modern production techniques are now widely used but some smaller wineries still use the traditional donkey to collect grapes and oxen to plough the vineyards as the fields are inaccessible to tractors.
- The main wine growing areas are near Limassol on the southern slopes of the Troodos mountains and in the south west, near Paphos.
- Commandaria is probably the most well known Cypriot wine, but it is very SWEET so not to everyone's taste.
Recommendations for the best Cyprus wine
Good value everyday table wines:
Dry, light and crisp, a bit like a Sauvignon, but not quite...well it's just Xynisteri!
Fruity, dry and light, good value for everyday drinking and great COLD on a hot Summer's day too...
We like these wines because they are ALWAYS good and the red seems to get better every year.
Both wines are produced by the Kiriakydis family at the Vasilikon winery in Kathikas. You can buy a case for € 45 AND you get a free bottle too!
Tip: They usually sell out of the white Vasilikon well before the end of the season so make sure you stock up before the end of the Summer!
The Kolios Amforeas winery in Statos near Pano Panagia is another popular winery which caters for a larger market by offering meze lunches with a wine tasting. The views from Statos at 1000m are spectacular on a clear day.
Our favourites from this winery are:
Ayios Fotios - a fruity everyday red, and Maratheftiko, a delicious unique tasting red made from the indigenous Maratheftiko grape - but we have had several bottles corked so it has gone down a little on our list of favourites.
Or if you prefer crisp, chilled wine to ice cream on a hot day, then try their aptly named Cornetto!
Less well known and hugely under-rated is the Tsalapatis winery in Polemi village. Established for 20 years, Andreas the owner produces some excellent wines including the dry white Regina and a lovely Sauvignon Blanc.
The Paphos region also has some newer wineries producing higher quality wines. Our favourites amongst these small new wineries are the Ezousa winery at Kannaviou and the Tsangarides winery situated in Lemona village.
For seriously good Shiraz, you should also try the superb reds from the Domaine Vlassides winery in the Limassol area (Koilani village).
Cyprus Wine Tour
If you love wine as much as we do, then why not take a
If you need advice on where to go or how to get there, just
CONTACT US for prices and dates.
P.S. Tip: If you're just ordering a GLASS of wine somewhere, the village RED is always better than the village WHITE which tends to have a very yellow colour and usually tastes...well...not very nice!
Better still, forget the awful village wine, order a bottle and take the rest home with you!
Take our Paphos region wine tour
About wine in Cyprus
Best Cyprus wines
Domaine Vlassides winery
Best Restaurants in Cyprus
Book a car for your wine tour
Troodos mountains - home of great wine
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