The vineyards of the PDO Dafnes zone lie on the western part of the Heraklion territory, on the eastern foothills of the Mt. Psiloritis (2.456m), in Crete. The boundaries of the wine growing PDO Dafnes zone cover the areas of Venerato, Kerassia, Siva, Avgeniki, Agios Thomas, Douli, Larani, Megali Vrysi, Agia Varvara, Ano Moulia, Panassos, Gergeri, Prinias, Ano Asites, Kato Asites, Pyrgos, Agios Myron, Pentamodi and Petrokefalo.
Viticulture has always been a dominant occupation in Crete throughout the years, in all historical periods. There are numerous references from the Roman period, the Byzantine era as well as the period of the Venetian domination.
The “Malvasia” wine used to be the most well-known wine of the Middle Ages and Dafnes was also famous for the exquisite “Dafiano” wine, famed and highly sought after since the 13th century.
Most vineyards in the PDO Dafnes area spread over the slopes. The climate is typical Mediterranean, with mild winters and cool summers.
The grape variety participating in the PDO Dafnes wines is Liatiko, an indigenous, red grape variety that contributes to the production of dense, high alcoholic, dry wines, with great aromatic complexity, as well as noteworthy sweet PDO Dafnes wines, made from sundried grapes.
It is definitely worth exploring the Wines of Crete itineraries to visit remarkable wineries in Dafnes area, as well as significant archeological sites like Faistos and Gortyna.