Artemis Karamolegos is among the finest examples of modern viticulture in Santorini. The winery combines great respect and love for Santorini's time-honoured winemaking traditions with a modern outlook and continuous investment in their vineyards and winemaking equipment. This is what makes it one of the most dynamic and fastest-growing wineries in Santorini.
A winery based on the solid foundations of granddad Artemis’s winemaking tradition since 1952. Artemis Karamolegos made a dynamic entrance into contemporary winemaking in 2004, when grandson Artemis Karamolegos invested in the production facility and the privately owned vineyards, producing wine of protected designation of origin (PDO) for the first time. Almost 15 years later, their wines continue to earn prizes at international and domestic competitions while their export activities continue to grow on a yearly basis: today they are currently the third largest winery of Santorini in terms of production volume.
The winery has won many prestigious awards in both domestic and international competitions. One of the most significant is the Judges’ Selection award for Santorini 2016 as best Greek white wine in the TEXSOM IWA 2017 competition: It is the most important wine competition in the USA and one of the most important in the world!
The winery participates in major international exhibitions such as ProWein, distributes its wines all over Greece through Vinalia and also exports to major overseas markets such as the US, Canada, Germany, Belgium, Cyprus, Japan, Denmark, the Nederlands.
It manages its own private vineyards and also cooperating producers’ vineyards in Kamari, Messaria, Exo Gonia, Pyrgos, Megalochori and Akrotiri, and also buys grapes from local producers.
The terroirs of Santorini, where microclimates vary from one area to the other, can provide unique and exceptional "interpretations" of the Assyrtiko variety and other local varieties of grapes. The transition from the traditional way of winemaking into a more serious process, respecting nature and its product, enables particularly interesting and exciting Santorini wines for years, slowly making the Appellation of Origin Santorini, and mainly Assyrtiko, the only Greek winemaking area and the unique Greek wines - benchmarks for Greece.
The history of the vineyard of Santorini is incredibly old, with evidence of real and systematic viticulture emerging after 1200 BC. Besides its age, the vineyards of Santorini are also one of the most unique phenomena in the world. In both arid and dry soil, the vines (along with fava beans, cherry tomatoes and some other crops) can exist because they can withstand drought as the roots of these very old vines not only penetrate the volcanic soils but spread their roots deep inside the earth.
The basket-like way of pruning and "winding" the vines, which is called "kouloura", is practiced due to the harsh weather conditions on the island, the dry and inhospitable volcanic soil, and the very strong winds. Thus the "kouloures"-vineyards of Santorini were invented, whose cultivation is just as difficult and painful as the vines in the vertical slopes of the valley of the river Moselle in Germany. But what wonderful wines do they both produce!
Αpproximately 7000 acres of Assyrtiko are cultivated and vinified, followed by the Aidani and other, red and white, grape varieties, including the excellent Mavrotragano. The arid-dry soil, suitable for viticulture of wine grape varieties, is of volcanic origin and sandy composition. The low levels of potassium and fertility in the soil is the reason behind the characteristic acidity of Assyrtiko wines. Yields are incredibly low and do not exceed 300–350 kg per acre, creating one more condition for producing fine wine. The harvest in Santorini, as in other regions of Greece, starts early – around the first 10 days of August.