The only way of planting the vineyard on the steep slopes of the hill Orthi Petra (standing stone) and technologically-sophisticated -and distinctive architecture- winery, work of art in the modern wine culture, make the Domaine Zacharioudakis an area to mark the modern and very promising wine history of Crete.
The 2000 m², privately owned, joint vineyard has been planted in a unique way, on small and large low stone walls on the steep slopes completely circling the hill, “Orthi Petra”. The scenery created ranks it one of the most beautiful vineyards in Europe.
The rocky, calciferous and sloping grounds combined with the altitude, the moderate weather conditions as well as the biological cultivation are the factors that create the conditions which result in our high quality grapes.
In the year 2000, journalist Stelios Zacharioudakis and his spouse, Victoria, began the implementation of their vision to create an area as a tribute to the vineyard and wine, which was completed in 2009.
The varieties which are cultivated are the red Kotsifali, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The white varieties are Vilana, Vidiano, Malvazia di Candia, Malvazia di Candia Aromatica and Sauvignon Blanc.
West of the vineyard is where the winery is located. Designed with state-of-the-art technology, this 2000 m² winery is “a work of art in the modern wine industry”. The winery consists of 3 levels which begine at the top, following the sequence of wine production, namely the grape gathering level, the wine production level and the cellar where the maturing is achieved in oak barrels.
The red grapes are also passed down to the wine makers from the highest level of the winery without the aid of pumps.
The tanks and wine makers have an automatic freezing system.
Specific quantities of wine, which possess certain quality features, are placed in oak barrels in an underground maturing and aging area. That is where the wine cellar is located, the area where selected harvests are stored in bottles for many years.
The wines are bottled in a state-of-the-art bottling machine in the Domain, in accordance with the regulations of the international systems “ISO 2001” and “ISO 22000”, which guarantee the high quality of the final product.
The Land is situated amid an area rich in history and natural beauty.
At a distance of 1 km south of the land is where the archeological sight of Gortina stands, the area where Zeus came together with Europe, the princess who gave her name to the continent. In addition, this is where the most ancient written legal text of Europe was discovered, the famous “Gortynia Code”.
West of the Land, at a distance less than 2 km, is where the mythical cave “Lavirinthos” is located; a cave of more than 3 km of winding paths, of which a part is open to the public.
The gathering of white varieties is done at the highest level of the winery. With the help of gravity, the grape-pulp is driven down to the pressing tank, which is located directly beneath the gathering area. Once again, gravity drives the now must to the level beneath the pressing tank where stainless steel tanks are situated in which yeast extraction is completed. This way, the hassle of pumping the must is avoided.
Near this sight is where the ancient pressing tanks, carved into the rock, are located, proof of the time-old connection of the area to vine and wine.
At a distance of 12 km is where the archeological sight of Phaestos is located, while 7 km away from the village is where you can find the village Zaros. Even further up in the Psiloriti mountain range is where the forest of Rouvas lies.
The beautiful beaches of Southern Crete, those of Matala, Agia Galini, Kalamaki and Lentas are close by.