Tavernas in Greece offer affordable, delicious and authentic food. Unfortunately the accompanying wines usually share only one, either the “affordable” or the “delicious”, attribute. Mediocre jug wines are the rule (affordable). If one is able to find selected bottled wine (delicious), their price tags are often reminiscent of the wine lists seen at posh international restaurants.
I just spent a week with my family in one of Greece’s most beautiful villages, Kyparissi in Laconia (Peleponnese). Our favourite local taverna is called “Ploes” – apart from the outstanding food, the owners do a great job of selecting Greek wines from the local area that do deliver – both in terms of price and quality.
It is hard to track down solid quality jug wines, but certainly not impossible. Imagine my surprise when I found out that one of the bag in box wines comes straight from the Theodorakakou Estate, one of Laconia’s largest organic growers.
What impressed me even more was the pricing and availability of the bottled wines on offer: The current 2010 vintages of the stunning Kydonitsa and the equally successful Malagousia by Vatistas Vineyards for 15 Euros each, as well as the 2010 Laloudi (Moschofilero) by the Monamvasia winery for 14 Euros. These wines are amongst the best in all of Laconia.
The people behind Ploes do things right. They take care of details and the taverna is a showcase of a successful small portfolio of local Greek wines that educate the visitor and give immense drinking pleasure while fitting the overall prices of the dishes. I wish more taverna owners would follow suit – it would be so beneficial to introduce tourists to captivating and affordable wines, rather than relying on the cheap and uninspiring choices.