This eventful celebration of Cypriot wine took place on Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th August 2018, with a fulfilled programme packed with over 2,000 people on each day for the 4th annual Kamanterena wine festival!
Taking place at the company’s winery located in the beautiful village of Stroumpi, Paphos in a luscious landscape setting where visitors were given a welcome introduction and a brief background to the wines produced, somewhat a necessity as Kamanterena produces such vast and diverse wine variants.
This two-day festival celebrated the achievements of the winery and the culture of the wider Hellenic world. Now, understandably this may seem somewhat peculiar at a Cypriot event, but it is not uncommon for there to be a conglomeration of dances from areas of Europe, West Asia and the Caucasus that have Greek roots. What links Cyprus to the other regions of Greece is not only the historical conquests of the island by various Greek city states but also its oenological history. It is believed by several scholars that regions as west as France and Spain owe their wine roots to the early Greek colonisers and settlers, who along with the Phoenicians established colonies all over the Mediterranean. These two Ancient civilisations were masters of the seas, in a nut shell, the Greeks had colonised the northern parts and the Phoenicians to the Southern regions of Cyprus.
The Cultural program kicked off with traditional Cypriot dances by the Ktima Folklore group, followed by the grand opening of traditional products of the various communities of Paphos.The Tsoliades represented dances from northern Greece, and dance group Ergastiri Konion who performed traditional Cretan dances. Dancing has always played an important part in festivals since ancient times on the island and goes hand in hand with the celebration of wine especially when we consider that Kamanterena is located in Paphos, the birthplace of and favourite bathing spot of Lady Cyprus herself, Aphrodite. Many cults or religious sects were founded in worship of Aphrodite and more often than not had to do with music and wine.
For the Grand opening his excellency the Mayor of Paphos Mr Phedon Phedonos delivered his speech crediting the involvement of Kamanterena winery in the community of Paphos and for the continuing support to vine growing in Cyprus, as well as addressing the efforts being made to open new markets for wine exports. The municipality of Paphos has set agendas and will begin organising various events to promote Cypriot wines not only to visiting tourists but also to other locations as well. The Mayor was not only in attendance but took part, and rather well we must say, in a tsattista live mic ‘battle’ which really got the crowd going! Tsattista, usually improvisational vocal duel is incredible inclusive and audience engagement encourages or halts depending on the ability to keep to the rhythm and the quality of light insults, in jest of course!
Mr Nicolaides, managing director of SODAP winery, in his speech, referred to the history of the winery and its great prospects, especially in producing high quality wines, attested by the 34 new medals and accolades the winery has won in 2018, in international wine competitions, such as the Decanter World Wine Competition, and the IWSC (International Wines and Spirits Competition), including two Silver medals for it Kamanterena Zivania.
Mihalis HatziMihael’s band, of the popular ‘Paradosiaki Vradia’ TV program, are never a disappointment ensuring the traditional Cypriot folk sound lives on, together with Demetra HatziMichael on vocals, and as always with infectious enthusiasm. The multi-talented rising star of Cyprus, Antri Karantoni as always made an impression with her sweet and powerful vocals. There was a live music set performing famous Greek singer Eleni Hatzidou and her band, singing her own as well as the hits present and past, an easy task for this talented pop-folk singer. There were also a set by popular Cypriot singer Kypros Charilaou ensuring that the festivities continued till the early hours!
It was no surprise that it was a full house, well an open aired festival amongst the vineyards to be exact, with free entry and plenty of free wine flowing throughout the night. The only expenses were the buffet but considering the spread – incredible value for money and how to get there and back!
CyWineFest is proud to present Kamanterena wines every year, but there’s nothing like having them there in the flesh and we hope we have the pleasure at CyWineFest 2019
If you would like to purchase their fine selection of wines, please visit http://kamanterena.com.cy/shop/
Credit: http://kamanterena.com.cy/ Marinos Pericleous