Best Quality Wines From Anatolia

Anatolia is the heart of Turkish wine production. Winemaking in Turkey dates back to 3,000 BC. The production of wine was limited by law during the Ottoman period. The restrictions were only lifted when Ataturk founded Turkey in 1923, and Turkey’s wine industry expanded rapidly from 1970 to 1980. The consumption by tourists helped the industry to boom. In the mid-1980s, many winegrowers placed more emphasis on quality than the quantity of the fine wine. About Wine History in Anatolia Read more

This new direction was quickly rewarded with international recognition and awards for individual varieties. Today, Turkish winegrowers produce around 80 million liters of wine annually, which is exported all over the world and is becoming increasingly popular with wine drinkers. Most of the grapes grow in the Marmara region, on the Aegean coast and in Central Anatolia. However, only about 5% of the grapes are used to make wine; the rest are eaten, refined into syrup, or dried to make raisins.

The local grape varieties Boğazkere and Öküzgözü grow in the southeastern part of Turkey and are known for their 1A quality and give an excellent red wine, which also has its price. The Narince grapes grow in Tokat, in the north of Central Anatolia, and are processed into a tasty white wine. The Sauvignon Blanc grape also thrives on Turkish soil and under the Turkish sun. Wine growing, production and bottling are controlled and subject to strict criteria.

Turkish Wine Regions

The most important Anatolian wine-growing regions are in the Aegean region on the Aegean coast. In these areas, which have more moisture than the dry interior, almost two thirds of the wines are produced. 34 grape varieties are used for viticulture, 22 local and 12 international. Turkish Wine Regions Read more

Marmara and Thrace (the European part of Turkey): In the areas around Tekirdağ, Çanakkale, Edirne, Kırklareli and Bilecik 40% of Turkish wines are produced. The red grape varieties: Papazkarası, Adakarası, Karaseker, Gamay, Pinot Noir and Cinsault. The following white grape varieties are used: Semillon, Yapıncak, Beylerce, Clairette, Misket and Riesling.

Aegean coast of Anatolia: 20% of Turkish wine production in the regions around İzmir, Manisa and Denizli. Calkarası, Grenache and Carignan as well as increasingly Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon are used as red grape varieties.

Gökçeada ( Imbros) & Bozcaada (Tenedos ) islands are located in Aegean region of Turkey. These islands are famous for their windy summer time.

On the Black Sea, which is considered the original home of the grapevines, there are smaller growing areas near Çorum, Tokat, Kastamonu and Samsun. The indigenous Dimrit, Sergikarası (red) and Narine (white) grapes are mainly used here.

Central Anatolia has a continental climate with harsh winters and hot summers. Kalecik Karası, Papazkarası, Dimrit, Boğazkere and Öküzgözü (all red varieties) and the white varieties Emir, Narince and Hasandede are grown here. The areas are at Ankara, Kırıkkale, Kırşehir and Niğde.

In Eastern Anatolia viticulture is practiced around Elazığ as well as in the Southeast Anatolian provinces Gaziantep, Mardin, Şanlıurfa and Diyarbakır. The main varieties are Öküzgözü, Bogazkere, Horozkarası (all red) as well as Narince, Dokulgen and Kabarcık.

Wine Regions of Turkey - Turkish Wine Regions-Anatolian Wine Regions

Wine Grapes Of Anatolia

Turkey has more than 1.200 – 1.500 named grape varities of which 800 are genetically different. There are around 30 outstanding wine grape varieties among all these types. The indigenous and international grape varieties below are those that are widely used for wine making.

Adakarası, Alicante Bouchet, Barburi, Boğazkere, Bornova Misketi, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Chardonnay, Cinsault, Çalkarası, Çavuş, Dimrit, Emir, Gamay, Grenache, Kalecik Karası, Karalahna, Kuntra, Malbec, Merlot, Narince, Öküzgözü, Papazkarası, Petit Verdot, Pinot Noir, Riesling, Sangiovese, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Shiraz, Sultaniye, Tempranillo, Vasilaki, Viognier are all used Anatolian Wine Grapes today Read more

Structure of Viticulture in Turkey

A few large wineries dominate the wine growing scene. The quality progression of the last few years has only just begun. Due to the success of these goods, small wineries are currently being created along the lines of French companies (châteaux). Most of the approximately 100 Turkish winegrowers are very small and do not export. Since the vineyards are spread all over the country and the large wineries have an enormous need for grape material, the grapes often have to be transported a few hundred kilometers in refrigerated transport from the vineyard to the wineries.

Anatolian Wine: Table of Contents