The PDO Peza zone (established in 1971 for red wine and in 1982 for white wine) is situated centrally and somewhat to the north in the district of Heraklion, Crete, most of it in the Nikos Kazantzakis area (Peza, Agies Paraskies, Agios Vassilios, Alagni, Astrakies, Astritsi, Kalloni, Katalagari, Kounavi, Melesses, Myrtia, Houdetsi). Geographically, it is an unfragmented zone, which also occupies land on the northwestern part of the Arkalohori area (Patsideros, Panorama) and the northern part of Thrapsani (Sambas). The vineyards must be planted at altitudes higher than 300m.
The PDO Peza zone is the easternmost of three successive PDO wine zones in the district of Heraklion. It is far more developed than the other two (PDO Archanes and PDO Dafnes). The red grape variety of Mandilaria -widely planted throughout the Aegean and called Mandilari in Crete- apart from its presence in PDO Peza wine it also contributes to PDO Archanes, PDO Paros and PDO Rhodes wines. Its rough characteristics make it necessary to have it blended or vinified together with other, softer grape varieties. At Peza and Archanes, vintners use Kotsifali; in Paros they blend it with the white Monemvassia; it is only on Rhodes that the variety is vinified on its own. Although not required by regulations, the PDO Peza reds have traditionally contained a ratio of 75% Kotsifali to 25% Mandilaria.
- Dry white
- Dry red