Rhodes was one of the first islands in the Aegean to adopt the cultivation of the grape vine and the vinification process and undoubtedly the foremost merchant of renowned and sought-after wines by the mid 7th century B.C. Rhodian amphorae, marked with the emblems of Rhodes, the rose or the head of the sun-god Helios, have been found throughout the Mediterranean area and in ancient sites around the Danube River, the Black Sea and India.
The respected reputation of Rhodian wine continued well into the period of the occupation of the island by the Knights of Saint John (1309 – 1522 AD). The Italians rulers, in the beginning of the 20th century, took a lively interest in reviving agriculture in Rhodes.
The wines of Rhodes are labelled as POP and PGI (products and Geographical Indication of Origin of Superior Quality wines). A special place is held by the sparkling wine of Rhodes. A number of small wineries that produce local wine are also in Attaviros and prophet Ilias mountains, where the main soil substance is limestone.
Vintage starts early, around the 20th of August and is usually completed within seven to ten days. All the grapes are picked carefully by hand in the early morning hours, before the sun comes out. There are two local grape varieties: the Athiri grape, small and juicy, with a golden green color and the Amorgiano grape, rare, with a fruity taste, soft aroma and ruby color. Souma and moustalevria also are local products of grapes.