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Cyprus: Wine Routes for 2015

Cyprus: Wine Routes for 2015
Helen Hokin: Cyprus has unveiled seven new wine routes for 2015. Though the Cypriots might lay claim to some of the most ancient of winemaking traditions in Europe, these routes - tried, tested and endorsed by wine expert, Caroline Gilby MW, celebrate a contemporary scene played out in cutting-edge tasting rooms that make Cyprus a must-visit for 2015.
 
We lead you through just one of the exciting new routes on offer.
 
Route 1: From Laonato Akamas in Cyprus’ rural north-west.
Follow ancient roads and peaceful rural pathways through the rural North-West. Here, your route begins as you depart low-lying farmland and begin your gentle ascent through dense forests, sparsely populated villages and characterful roadside tavernas leading to verdant hilltops and undulating vineyards for as far as the eye can see. The wine villages dotted along this route produce wines of Controlled Denomination of Origin.
 
FIKARDOS WINERY 26949814, 26937439 Mesogi
Varieties that find their way into wine her include the red Maratheiko, Lefkada, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and the white Xynisteri, Chardonnay and Semillon. Fikardos offers both single estate and blends of several grape varieties. Taste your way  across the range with delights such as the Valentina rosé, the white Amalthia and Alkisti and the red Shiraz. The winery is open to visitors every day and offers a very good perspective of the wine-making capabilities of this area.
 
KAMANTERENA SODAP 26633000 Stroump
Set within its own vineyards and surrounded by rows of almond trees, Cyprus’ largest wine producer is housed in a functional building sparkling with modern equipment. Some well-known wines are produced here and notably, millions of bottles of its Islands Vines
Cyprus: Wine Routes for 2015
are exported to Britain every year. Varietals such as Riesling-Xynisteri make for just one of the interesting blends on offer while “Mountain Vines” a luscious red from the Cabernet grape is definitely worth a try.
 
TSALAPATIS WINES CO LTD 99624929, Polemi
This is a moderately sized modern plant, making 100,000 bottles a year of quality wines. Grapes come from 30 acres of privately owned vineyards. In the naturally cool below-ground wine ‘caves’ you can taste and buy from a small but interesting range: Xynisteri, of course, but also Sauvignon Blanc and a red blend of Mataro and Lefkada.
 
K & K VASILIKON 26633237, 26632520 Kathikas
Two not to miss from this winery are Vasilikon made from 95% Xynisteri and 5% Semillon. It is fresh, fruity and ideal with locally caught fresh fish and seafood. The red Ayios Onoufrios, blended from Mavro, Mataro, Cabernet Sauvignon and Grenache, is a best-seller. The Kyriakides brothers, who started the winery in 1993, now produce more than 300,000 bottles a year. Their wines are made largely from grapes grown in their own vineyards and produced  in state of the art surroundings faced in stone and tiles to blend sympathetically into the rural surroundings. Visitors are welcome by appointment to taste the wines and tour the winery.
 
STERNA WINERY LTD 99699082 Kathikas
Sterna wine hails from grapes grown on 140 acres of privately owned vineyards while a 2,000 year-old cellar houses its wines. Sampling takes place on a sunny terrace where tipples are paired with local food. The range features pungent, earthy wines perfect for local pork and sausage specialities. Try the native  Xynisteri, a great match for grilled fish.
 
For more information on Cyprus and its wine routes visit www.visitcyprus.com
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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