This grape is historically known for sweet fortified wine, Mavrodaphne of Patras. However, today, excellent dry wines are also made of Mavrodaphne. Dark, powerful, with a generous sweet nose, these Greek wines are often compared to Italian Amarone.
Mavrodaphne, a.k.a. Mavrodaphni, is an indigenous black grape variety mainly grown in the Peloponnese in Greece, but also found in Kefalonia. The name ‘Mavrodaphne’ translates from Greek as “black laurel.” Historically, this grape became known for fortified dessert wine, Mavrodaphne of Patras, made in a similar style to Port. Indeed, with dense aromas of prunes, high alcohol content and medium acidity, Mavrodaphne is a perfect grape for fortified wine. However, while this wine is still widely produced in the Peloponnese, nowadays a few winemakers make dry styles of Mavrodaphne, proving that this grape is capable of producing excellent full-bodied reds.
Aromas And Styles
Mavrodaphne grapes are highly aromatic and powerful and so is the resulting wine. Amost black in colour, bold and intense, with concentrated aromas and high alcohol levels, this wine is sometimes compared to Amarone wine of Veneto. Mavrodaphne flavours include dried prunes, currants, blackberries, as well as notes of flowers, aromatic herbs and leather. The nose is generous and sweet, while the palate is fresh, full-bodied and well-structured. Dry Mavrodaphne shows a good ageing potential and will easily last for over 10 years. Nowadays, dry Mavrodaphne wine remains a rare find – even more fascinating to try it!