Tag Archives: Cyprus

A selection of the best wines in the Eastern Mediterranean.


(Une sélection des meilleurs vins en Méditerranée de l’Est)

  • Greece

Agiorgitiko: This grape produces lush, velvety reds with black-cherry flavors.

Agiorgitiko, which is the most widely planted grape in Greece, is most easily comparable to Cabernet Sauvignon, as it has similar dark fruit flavors of prunes and plums, and the same heavy tannins that dry your mouth out and beg for the wine to be drunk alongside meat. It’s also due to this similarity that you can often find the two grapes blended together. It’s a powerful and bold red wine that fans of this style will love, which is what makes it go so well with the heavier meat dishes.

  • Turkey

Öküzgözü: is a grape variety and a Turkish wine produced from this grape. “It’s called ‘bull’s eye’ because it’s a big, round, dark grape.

The grape is one of the two native grape varieties of Elazığ province, located on the Anatolian plateau at the north of the Taurus Mountains. Öküzgözü makes bright, fruit-driven red wines. These grapes make a full-bodied, intense red wine that marries well with food and can benefit from time spent in cellar.

  • Lebanon

Ixsir red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon Variety):Plenty of fruit with licquorice on the finish – and yet, it is dry with elegance, enveloped in fine, soft oak, and finishing very long.

This (unusual) red blend of Caladoc, Syrah, Tempranillo made with the help of St-Emilion’s Hubert de Boüard (of Château Angélus) from vines grown at an altitude of 1,000 metres is refined and elegant, a pronounced streak of freshness giving verve and definition to the blackcurrant fruit, while the tannins are polished to a fine sheen. 90/100: The Wine Gang

  • Egypt

According to the Oxford Companion to Wine, today Egypt produces about half a million gallons of wine a year (about as much as England). This is a remarkable amount of wine, especially considering that 75% of Egypt’s population are (mostly) non-drinking Muslims.

There are only a very few modern Egyptian wines in production. Egypt’s climate is simply too hot and dry to support viticulture on any scale. Although vines are famously fond of dry conditions, they need a certain amount of water for respiration and photosynthesis. Beyond that, water makes up a significant part of the grapes which are, after all, the entire point of viticulture. The famously fertile Nile Delta (one of the world’s largest river deltas) is the only part of Egypt where viticulture is a practical enterprise. The delta is formed as the Nile River fans out before draining into the Mediterranean. It stretches westwards along the coast from Port Said to Alexandria (home of the Muscat of Alexandria grape), and thus benefits from the cooling effects of the nearby sea.

Grand Marquis: This wine needs food like red meats because of its power.

Sometimes sweet or simple red , smooth, easy, middle of the road, clear, vanilla, silky, short finish, well integrated, diluted like a Crystal Light packet, blackberry jam, Egyptian version of table wine, low sugar, low tannins.

  • Cyprus

Marathevtiko: its grapes can give rich wines with soft tannins and aromas of cherries and black chocolate. With proper care it offers an excellent wine with great body, intense color and a pleasant bouquet. The characteristics of this wine rank it among the most high-quality varieties of our country with prospects of development. Specifically, it is characterized by a scent of freshly cut grass, vanilla, berries and wood.

Maratheftiko does not have hermaphrodite flowers like many cultivated grape varieties and requires co-planting with other varieties in order to achieve fertilisation and fruit development. This exceptional variety was grown amongst other grape varieties and was used in winemaking only to improve the colour and body of wines made from the local Mavro. Maratheftiko still represents only 3% of cultivated vineyards on the island but has become extremely popular among Cypriot winemakers and wine enthusiasts.

  • Palestine

Taybeh wine.(source)

Nadim Khoury, a Palestinian who is known for establishing Taybeh Brewery, has also opened a winery in the West Bank Christian majority village of Taybeh. Using 21 indigenous varieties of grapes, the wines produced were quick to gain visitors’ praise.Khoury admits that Israeli restrictions has made it difficult to do business, his shipments for example, including his wine-making equipment, have been delayed because of Israeli checkpoint inspections.The family behind the wine and beer says they are carrying out “peaceful resistance” by investing in their homeland and staying put.A wine festival is now held annually in the town.

Nadim Cabernet Sauvignon is a full-bodied, elegant and complex wine that exhibits flavors of local spices and ripe cherry. Its equilibrated acidity and persistent tannins allow this wine to age effortlessly for years. Nadim Merlot is a well-balanced, medium-bodied and aromatic wine. The nose and palate exhibit intense aromas of fresh herbs combined with hints of cherry and a background of earth. Its maturity and smooth tannins allows for immediate enjoyment of this wine.

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Opinion: The human dignity in the face of hypocrisy


written by Costas Mavrides MEP   (S&D &DIKO),

D-TRDelegation to the EU-Turkey Joint Parliamentary Committee

Judiciary in Turkey had always been an instrument of the regime from the Kemalists generals to the President Erdogan’s  “Neo-Ottomanist regime“. Courts in Turkey simply don’t exist anymore. Currently there are only “President Erdogan’s Courts” that serve him while he considers that “the judiciary in Turkey is more fair than in any other European country”.

Turkish journalist Abdullah Bozkurt  who has been in exile in Sweden discloses dirty little secrets regarding Turkey, since kemalism until today, with the aim of influencing certain officials in various key positions.  From politicians, academics, journalists and diplomats of foreign states to judges at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg! Into these “great exploits” of Turkey through blackmail and corruption, including interference with judges at the European Court of Justice in Strasbourg for a case involving the Republic of Cyprus. The reporter also lists Karl Bild’s (Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs from October 2006 to October 2014) links as he’s openly a current apologist for Turkey’s Erdogan regime.

Incidentally, after the failure of the Annan Plan to reunificate Cyprus, Mr Bild took a leading role- with some Greek Cypriots-to punish the Cypriot government and to reward the breakaway regime. His wife, Anna Maria Corazza Bildt,  who is now a MEP, Sweden (EPP) is the head of the lobby in favour of Erdogan’s regime. Furthermore, bloodthirsty  Hakan Fidan , who heads Turkey’s National Intelligence Agency, is the head of  all regime’s dirty work. It is believed that the massacre in Egypt’s Al Arish province  has been carried out by the Turkish MİT. Or rather, this is a massacre carried out by Hakan Fidan on Erdoğan’s orders.

Against to all these people “related to corruption”, there are still some people who resist with boldness. The two co-chairmen of the  Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) in Turkey,  Selahattin Demirtas ( of Kurdish origin) and Figen Yuksekdag (of  Turkish origin) who have been detained in different prisons since November 2016 with 7 other deputies had to be brought to court this month. The regime accuses them for “establishment of an armed terrorist organization” , “terrorist propaganda” (*) etc… After a year, the only evidence against them are the public speeches they had done for years! Turkey’s government soughts to imprison him for up to 142 years. In addition, the Kurdish leader is being tried in absentia after the court denied his right to attend, insisting he use a video link from the prison in which he is being held — an option he refused.

Consequently, the courts in Turkey are just an instrument for promoting the mandates of the regime. Courts are only in name. However,  the  ECHR (Strasbourg) rejected the request of the evicted to appeal directly to the European Court  and demands that all “Turkish appeals” to be addressed and exhausted first in Turkey! We’re faced with so much hypocrisy from the highest level of fairness and respect in Europe.

In the face of hypocrisy, Demirtas’ statement to “Erdogan’s Prosecutor” remains a timeless monument of dignity of humanity:

 “We are the elected representatives of people. We are not representing ourselves but the masses who elected us. We are member of parliament with a parliamentary immunity. I will not allow to disrespect the will of my people. I refuse to be an actor this judicial theatre that started just because Erdogan ordered it. I will not answer to your questions. Even bringing me here is illegal. Being in parliament or in prison, we will continue to defend our ideas and struggle. We have no doubt that we will get our country and people rid of this fascistic regime under the name of presidency. Sooner or later the democratic struggle will win. The regime under Erdogan will change. I have no requests or expectations from you. Only my people can question me for my political activities”. – Demirtas, Nov 2016.

Even if Demirtas remains still in prison, the young leader with his courage preserves the dignity of humanity.

Costas Mavrides, MEP (S&D) 

costas.mavrides@europarl.europa.eu
*Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the  position of Eyes on Europe & the Middle East.Translation made by Eyes on Europe & the Middle East. 
  • Notes:

*1. Ankara accuses HDP of having ties to the PKK, a named terrorist organization. In May 2016, the Turkish parliament voted to lift immunity from a select group of lawmakers, including many HDP members.