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Wines & Alcoholic Drinks


Wines

The history of winemaking in Cyprus is very old, one of the oldest in the world. Recent excavations by Italian archaeologists have revealed the sensational truth that in this small island the production of wine dates back some 6000 years. At the village of Pyrgos in Lemesos district, two jugs were found which had been used for wine – even grape pips were traced! At the village of Erimi eighteen pots were unearthed, twelve of which had been used for wine at some period between 3500 and 3000 BC. This cultural heritage is the oldest in the whole Mediterranean basin and leads to the assumption that Cyprus triggered the spread of winemaking to Greece, Italy, France and other regions.

There is an abundance of archaeological findings which provide ample evidence that viticultural activities in Cyprus date back to the depths of time. There are unique ancient mosaics portraying god Dionysus (Bacchus), very old wine-presses at the villages of Omodos, Lania and elsewhere and amphorae and other wine-related pots crowding the island's archaeological museums. They are all tangible proof of Cyprus' viticultural history through the centuries, testaments of an awe-inspiring heritage in winemaking.

Cyprus still boasts some of the oldest wine grape varieties, unaffected by phylloxera at the beginning of the 20th century, many of which have colourful histories of their own. None more-so than the renowned and several times award winning Commandaria.

The last 10 years have seen dramatic changes in the Cypriot winemaking landscape. Following the country’s entry into the EU in 2004, the winemakers of Cyprus have taken the best of what Europe offers from wine production through to marketing and branding and combined it with their own personality and history to offer UK consumers something unique.

Since 2004 Cyprus has maintained upheld a classification system based on the right given to four viticultural regions on the island (Akamas Laona, Vouni Panayias – Ambelitis, Pitsilia and the villages of Limassol) to produce wines denoted as ‘Wines of Controlled Appellation of Origin’ and a fifth region where Commandaria Wine (Protected Geographical Indication) is produced.

Over the past generation the four key traditional wineries - ETKO, KEO, SODAP and LOEL – have been joined by over 60 smaller regional wineries which gave birth to a new era in Cyprus viniculture and wine production. Cyprus’ wine makers are continuously expanding production by planting new vineyards, buying and restoring old wineries and investing in human expertise to develop new techniques and blends in wine making which have led to many international distinctions.

Here you can also find more information regarding:

Commandaria


Cyprus wine classification


Cyprus wine culture

The Cyprus Vineyard

To view the main and regional wineries, click 
here or visit our Directory of Exporters.  

If you wish to find Cyprus Wine Retailers/Importers please click here
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Zivania

Zivania is a traditional alcoholic beverage, which has been produced for centuries in Cyprus by distillation, and has played an important role in the everyday life of Cypriots. Zivania is a strong drink, high in alcoholic content which according to tradition (also adopted by the 1998 Regulations for the Control of zivania) it is a distillate produced only from grapes. Since 2004, Zivania has been protected under EU regulations as a product unique to Cyprus and as such cannot be produced in any other country or marketed under that name.

Zivania is characterized by its typical taste and aroma. It is colorless and it has a pleasant alcoholic content with light aroma of raisins. The typical alcohol content is 45% by volume. It is a pure drink that contains no sugars and has no acidity. 
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The Cyprus Trade Centre in London operates under the auspices of the Cyprus Ministry of Energy, Commerce, Industry and Tourism as the economic and commercial section of the Cyprus High Commission in the United Kingdom. It is one of the twelve export promotion missions of the Republic of Cyprus abroad...LEARN MORE
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