Someone should look into the specificities of the Greek vineyard in order to understand better the Greek wine. In terms of area under vines, Greece is a small wine-country, with a total of about 64,000 ha of vineyards intended for wine production. There are some signs of slight increase in the near future, but this number has been relatively stable over the last years. This, alongside with the fact that most wine is consumed within the country, either from the locals or the multitudes of tourists that visit each year the touristic destinations, means that not much of the total production finds a way to the export markets.
Apart from being small, the Greek vineyard is also very fragmented and the average vineyard-holding size is slightly above 5 Stremma (1 stremma is the acreage unit measure in Greece and equals 0.1ha). The total land under vines is spread over 180.000 growers and for many of them this is a side-income or a vineyard inherited by their families. Greece has also more than 1,200 wineries, a number which has been steadily rising from year to year.
The average annual production in 2020 and 2021 was 2.3 and 1.7 million hl respectively, which ranks Greece as the 17th largest wine-producing country (for 2020) in the world. In 2021, PDO wines accounted for 9.5% of total wine production, while PGI wines accounted for 23.5%.
Greece produces more white than red wine, with the latter accounting for just a third of total production. An impressive 90% of plantings consist of the country’s rich stock of indigenous grape varieties. White Savatiano grape is on the top of the list, followed by the pink skinned Roditis. Agiorgitiko is the most planted red grape variety and third overall, followed by Liatiko, Xinomavro, Muscat of Hamburg and Assyrtiko. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are the two most popular international grape varieties in the Greek vineyard.