One of the pioneers of the modern Greek wine revolution, Gai’a Estate (pronounced Yay-ya) was established in 1994 by Leon Karatsalos and winemaker Yiannis Paraskevopoulos (PhD, University of Bordeaux II). Their mission was to capture the best that Greece’s indigenous grapes have to offer by merging traditional viticultural and production methods with innovative techniques. The estate is named after “Mother Earth,” in honor of the unique terroir that gives birth to these world-class wines.
Location of Vineyard
Operating two different wineries, Gai’a Estate makes cutting edge wines in both Santorini and Nemea. The boutique winery in Santorini is located in Monolithos on the east coast of the island. The buildings were converted from an old tomato processing plant, a remnant of the island’s artisanal agricultural history dating back to the early 19th century. The volcanic soil, and unique climatic conditions of the Santorini vineyards provide the ideal environment for the native Assyrtiko grape to thrive.
The Nemea winery was built in 1997 in the heart of the estate vineyards located around the village of Koutsi. The subregion of Koutsi is a semi-mountainous area known for its chalky soils and good drainage. The cool temperatures, the ideal sun exposure and the steep inclination of the vineyards offer optimum conditions for concentrated, high-quality Agiorgitiko.
Gai’a Estate is responsible for producing some of the most exciting wines of Greece, by merging traditional viticultural and production methods with innovative techniques. Yiannis Paraskevopoulos, leading the charge of today’s new generation of internationally-trained winemakers, pushes the boundaries of Greek winemaking by experimenting with wild yeast fermentation and alternative materials for wine aging, and reinventing the formulas for some of Greece’s most historic wine styles.