18 Jul Wine Tour and Athens’ local products
WINE TOUR ATHENS
Local products and Wine tour
Our Wine Tour, takes us today to the Temple of Artemis. After the Vravrona tower we head east towards the sea. Crossing a small valley with vineyards, fig trees and vegetable gardens we come across a kiosk selling all the local products. The family that runs the place looks like it’s been there for ages. Their small fields are scattered around the kiosk and the archaeological site.
I always feel obliged to stop and buy not knowing why. Is it the serenity of the landscape, the temple of Artemis and the archaeological site nearby? Or the respect for the family that works hard the fields day and night, forces me to stop and buy their products? All the above plus the quality of the products that they sell.
Attica, is the region that encompasses the city of Athens. It is a big triangular peninsula which projects into the Aegean Sea. The mountains on the north protect the land from the cold north winds. Attica enjoys a Mediterranean climate with very dry summers and mild winters. The breeze from the sea cools down the temperature in the hilly plains during summer. In these ideal conditions there is no need of pesticides in the fields, as the arid earth, the winds and the dry summer ensure the healthiness of the plants.
That’ s why Athens was famous of its vineyards and wine millenniums ago. The local grape variety of Savatiano is resistant to drought and is cultivated in low bushes. Olive, pistachio and fig trees offer tasteful products and the land is fruitful. Small fields of all kind of vegetables are spread between the hills.
So at my stop at the kiosk, next to the Temple of Artemis, there is no question “What do I buy?” Practically everything. Colorfull tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, eggplants, herbs, in summer. Tasteful cabbages, potatoes, carrots in winter.
In Greek cuisine the vegetables are the most important ingredients because there there are so many. In summer my favorite food is vegetables stuffed with rice, onion and herbs. It’s “gemista” in Greek, a dish that everybody likes. The Athens Wine Tour will end with a cool glass of Savatiano wine. The Athenian wine with a refreshing acidity and pleasant aromas of lemon, citrus, pear and a light botanic character. Cheers to Athens.