The winemaking tradition of Crete dates back almost 4000 years ago to the celebrated Minoan Civilization. In fact it was on Crete near the village of Archanes that the oldest wine press in the world was discovered.The vineyards of Crete are planted on the northern part of the island, protected from the warm African winds by the mountains that crisscross the island from east to west. The unique Cretan ecosystem provides the ideal environment for the production of the PDO Archanes, Peza, Dafnes and Sitia wines in addition to several well made vins-de-pays.The most popular grapes are Vilana, Kotsifali, Mandelaria and Liatico as well as Chardonnay, Syrah and the hard to find Plyto, Dafni and Thrapsathiri varieties.