Dafni is an almost extinct variety of white grape of Crete, that has come again to the spotlight. This happened thanks to the production of dry white wines with intense aromas and round on the palate, that maintains moderate alcohol levels. Some ambitious producers use the oldest vineyards to make even a few wines of barrel fermented daphne. Daphni is related to the laurel plant
The reasons for which this variety has taken this name are obvious, since the aroma and the full flavors of these wines remind those of laurel and other refreshing and spicy herbs and are combined with others, reminding ripe yellow and white fruits. They have a very distinct structure in the palate: although characterized by enough extract, power and mild acidity, their alcohol content is surprisingly modest, particularly for the climatic conditions of Crete, rarely surpassing 12.5%. Daphne comes from the Heraklion region and although the vineyards of this variety remain limited and only in specific areas, producers are planting more and more Daphne. So, Dafni has a substantial goodwill and in proportion to the planted areas and to the number of bottles produced from it, it is much more highlighted. It is a variety delighting those who enjoy rich wines but dislike high alcohol levels. They are thus ideal companion to intense, yet light summer meals, such as pasta and salads. Most wines produced from the Daphni variety Dafni have to be consumed within three years from the harvest. However, the most adventurous wine lovers, who love
complexity, can keep some bottles for at least three more years.