EKFRASEIS WINERY IN CHANDRIA
“LOVE & PASSION FOR WINE”
Situated on the southern slopes of Madari Peak, at an altitude of 1,275 metres, is the village of Chandria. It is here where Christos Vassiliades chose to express himself, as a winemaker.
Wine Column by George Kassianos, President of Cyprus Sommeliers Association
As a child, Vassiliades visited his grandfather during weekends, to help take care of their family vineyards in Chandria. His fascination for cultivating and harvesting the grapes started from a very young age with his grandfather, who played a huge role in shaping his love and passion for wine. Vassiliades now holds a strong reputation for being a young, dynamic and very promising winemaker here in Cyprus. He is considered a bold investor in the Troodos terroir and commemorates his grandfather’s memory, by advancing steps further on the art of viticulture and winemaking.
His early passion for viticulture and vinification, led Vassiliades to pursue his studies in this field. His love for winemaking grew stronger and he later returned to Chandria, almost permanently, to replant most of his vineyards (10ha) with new varieties. He went on to acquire new vineyards, and continues to plant and grow. In 2013, Vassiliades officially launched his very own winery, called “Ekfraseies Winery”,or translated, “Winery Expressions”.
Following the opening of Ekfraseis Winery, the planting continued, the productive dynamics grew and his personal philosophy and vision began to develop. His aim is to create wines based on classical practices and traditions, in order to inspire others, but also to use the modern elements of vinification art to produce outstanding quality. Cyprus has an excellent microclimate with a tremendous diversity from side to side, huge momentum and sophistication. It can do wonders and defeat several of its competitors. The production of the winery is small and produces around 40,000 bottles per year. Vassiliades cultivates indigenous and international varieties alongside each other, and considers this to be an important parameter for the diversification of Cypriot viticulture, in relation to that of other countries.
Always at the back of his mind, is the average consumer and the needs of modern gastronomy. The main pillar in every effort is to capitalise on the potential of his privately-owned vineyards, especially, to a large extent, when they are based in favorable locations. Chandria is the second highest village in the whole of Cyprus. He works to get the most out of Cypriot grape varieties, mainly Mavro and Xynisteri, but also on the qualitative performance of certain imported grape varieties, such as, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Shiraz and Sauvignon Blanc. “It is fascinating to observe the growth performance of these imported grape varieties on Cyprus soil at over 1,200 meters”, he said.
Vassiliades believes that Cyprus is a sleeping giant and, along with various other prominent winemakers on the island, the alarm is set to change this in the near future.
For more information, visit their website at Ekfraseis.com