Thrace and Macedonia Wines
Thrace is in the extreme north-east of Greece, bordering on Bulgaria and Turkey. Thrace, which was once a land ofgorgeous, stunningly sweet wines such as those of Thasos, is now something of a bywater. The present vineyards that are mainly planted with vines such as the blue grape Mavroudi and Pamidi and white Zoumiatiko, are principally used for making bulk wine and indifferent table wines. The Greek Macedonia is situated to the west of Thrace and borders Bulgaria and the newly independent state of Macedonia. This area also has a long tradition of wine-growing and making.
Currently there are four wines with guaranteed origin made here and at least six oinos topikos (vins de pays or country wines) of excellent quality. Macedonia's vineyards are situated on sunny slopes on the hills inland, along the coast, and on the Chalkidiki peninsula.
Drama region and wine
Excellent country wines (oinos topikos or vins de pays) are made on the border between Thrace and Macedonia by the Lazaridi company, which only started operating in 1992. The winery is one of the most up-to-date in Greece and a perfect example of responsible and modern wine-making. Lazaridi make five dry wines under the Amethystos name (white, rose, red, and fume) and an excellent Chateau Julia white. The white wines are made from Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon , and Assyrtiko; the roses are produced from Cabemet Sauvignon, and the reds from Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Limnio.
In view of the high quality, the grape varieties used, and prices that the Greeks regard as on the high side, these wines are more likely to be found in Britain, The USA, or Japan than in Greece. Lazaridi has proved with these exceptional wines that it is possible to make wines with French grape varieties without producing imitations of French wines. Each of the Lazaridi wines has its own character, with an emphasis on the style of the bouquet.
Amynteon area wines
This is the most northerly wine area of Greece. The climate here is wholly continental and the vineyards are sited at heights of around 2,132 feet (650 metres) . The blue grape varieties of Xinomavro and Negoska thrive here.
Drinking temperature is 57.2- 60.5°F (14-16°C) .
Goumenissa area wines
The growers in Goumenissa, about 50 miles (80 km) north-west of Thessalia, also use the Xinomavro and Negoska grapes for their local red wines. The vineyards of Goumenissa are sited at about (820 feet (650 metres) high on chalky soil. Goumenissa is a dark red wine with glints of purple. Its nose is reminiscent of ripe fruit such as fig, cherry, and gooseberry, and the well-balanced taste is elegant and smooth, almost caressing in the aftertaste.