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Cephalonia Monastery Saint Fanentes

A Few Words on History & Myths

Viticulture on Cephalonia has deep roots going far back in time, which are steeped in myth. Cephalos, the first settler, was from Athens. As soon as he landed on Cephalonia, he planted the vine that he had brought with him to remind him of his native land. As timed passed, the Athenian land he had established became known as Thenian land, or Thenia.
However, from classical times to the end of the Byzantine era there was decline in viticulture. It would be centuries before the region acquired the relative peace required to grow high-maintenance noble crops. After 1264 the wine made on the island became well known, and demand spread as far as Constantinople and the Black Sea. However, it was not until the Ionian Islands became part of the Venetian Empire in 1500 that conditions improved significantly, with Venice becoming the exclusive buyer of Cephalonia Muscat and Mavrodaphne wines.


The history of modern Cephalonian winemaking starts with The Wine Company of Dr. Nicholas Pignattoro and his French winemaker. When the company went bankrupt, it was bought by the British merchant Ernest Toole, who modernized the facilities and regained foreign markets. Toole's company reached its peak at the beginning of World War I. However, the inter-war years were marked by instability in the wine markets, local crises and severe internal political upheavals. By the end of World War II, wine-making on the island was in decline again, and it was not until the mid-60s that interest was rekindled with the establishment of modern winery by Calliga and by the Komitopoulo brothers. Then the excellent local wines, particularly Robola, became well known internationally.

 

by Yerassimos Antzoulatos*

 

*Reference: "Guide to the Vineyards and Wineries of Cephalonia & Ithaca", Perfecture of Kefalonia and Ithaka, Argostoli, Cephalonia 2002

"Cephalus was a figure in Greek mythology, son of the ruler of Phocis, Deion, and Diomede. He was married to Procris, daughter of the king of Athens Erectheus and Praxithea. However, he was kidnapped by the goddess of dawn, Eos, and they became lovers. Cephalus never stopped loving Procris, though, which caused the discontent of Eos and eventually, she returned him to his wife.

Eight years had passed when Eos let Cephalus go back to his wife; so, he decided to return in disguise and seduced Procris. She was ashamed, and went to hunt with Artemis in the forest. After returning, she brought back two gifts, a javelin that never missed, and Laelaps, a hunting dog that always caught its prey.


Procris was happy that her husband returned to her, but she wondered how faithful he was to her. So, when he went to a mountaintop to invoke Nephele, she followed him. Cephalus heard a noise and not knowing it was his wife following, he threw the javelin thinking it was an animal. Procris was mortally wounded and just before she died, she asked Cephalus never to marry Eos.


Cephalus, distraught, exiled himself. After wandering for a long time, he ended up in an island where he eventually married his second wife and became the ruler of the area. The island was named after him as Cephallenia or Cephalonia. However, he never managed to recover from the death of Procris and committed suicide by falling from a cliff into the sea."

by

"Greek Mythology"

Cephalonia is a Greek island located in the Ionian Sea. It is the largest of the Ionian Islands and is located off the northwest coast of Greece. The island is known for its beautiful beaches, crystal-clear waters, and picturesque landscapes. It is a popular tourist destination, with a number of resorts and hotels catering to visitors from all over the world. Cephalonia is also home to a number of ancient ruins, including the remains of a Roman aqueduct, a Venetian castle, and a number of churches and monasteries. The island's capital is Argostoli, which is located on the southwest side of the island. Cephalonia is a beautiful and charming destination, with a rich history and culture that is waiting to be explored. 

The history of viticulture on the island of Cephalonia dates back thousands of years. The island has a long tradition of grape growing, with a number of indigenous grape varieties being cultivated and used to produce a wide range of wines.

The ancient Greeks, who colonized the island in the 9th century BCE, were among the first to cultivate grapes on Cephalonia. They planted grapevines in the island's fertile soil and used the grapes to produce wine, which was an important part of their culture and daily life.

Over the centuries, Cephalonian grape growers have developed a number of unique grape varieties and cultivation techniques that are specific to the island. Some of the most well-known Cephalonian grapes include Robola, a white grape used to produce a crisp and aromatic wine, and Mavrodaphne, a red grape used to make a sweet and fortified wine but also dry.

Today, viticulture is an important part of the island's economy, with a number of wineries producing a wide range of wines using traditional techniques and local grape varieties. These wineries are located in various parts of the island, such as Lixuri, Minies and Valsamata. Many of these wineries offer tours and tastings to visitors, providing an opportunity to learn more about the history and traditions of Cephalonian viticulture.

The history of winemaking on the island of Cephalonia dates back thousands of years. The island has a long tradition of wine production, with a number of indigenous grape varieties being grown and used to produce a wide range of wines.

Winemaking on Cephalonia has a long and rich history that can be traced back to ancient times. The island was known for its wine production as far back as the Classical period, with mentions of Cephalonian wine in the works of ancient Greek writers such as Homer and Aristotle.

Over the centuries, Cephalonian winemakers have developed a number of unique grape varieties and winemaking techniques that are specific to the island. Some of the most well-known Cephalonian wines include Robola, a white wine made from the Robola grape, and Mavrodaphne, a sweet red wine made from the Mavrodaphne grape.

Today, Cephalonia is home to a number of wineries that produce a wide range of wines using traditional techniques and local grape varieties. These wineries are located in various parts of the island. Many of these wineries offer tours and tastings to visitors, providing an opportunity to learn more about the history and traditions of Cephalonian winemaking.

by "AI bot"

Old Ruins of Calliga Winery 

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