Viticulture was first practised at the Domaine Paterianakis by Aristides Nikoloudakis,
the person who created the Domaine’s vineyard in the semi-mountainous region of Melessa,
within the Peza winegrowing region.


In 1980, Emmanuel continued the family tradition, being one of the first in Crete to adopt the principles of organic grape cultivation.


Later, his firstborn son, Giorgos Paterianakis, who literally grew up in the vineyards, took the first step and in 1988 created today’s privately owned Domaine of 16 hectares. Following a long tradition, he preserved all the autochthonous and rare grape varieties in the vineyards, gradually and selectively adding French varieties that are perfectly adapted to the distinct small climate of the winegrowing region.


In 1990, Giorgos Paterianakis, although enjoying a successful career as a civil engineer, decided, at the age of 55, to leave the construction industry to return to his roots and his old love, which was none other than the continuation of the family tradition. After conducting studies and countless wine trips, he designed and built an innovative winery made of natural materials on six different levels, taking advantage of gravity.


In 1997 the first organic wine of the Domaine – and the first in Crete – was produced. The “Domaine Paterianakis” and the “Melissinos Rosé” were the Domaine’s first wines, which were distinguished for their particular wine characteristics as well as the fact that they were made from organically cultivated grapes. In addition, the Domaine’s first organic tsikoudia spirit was produced, with the name “Paradise” and in a limited edition.


In 2000, the “Melissinos” evolved with the addition of a white wine, a blend of the Cretan variety Thrapsathira and the French Sauvignon Blanc variety, as well as a red wine made with the French Syrah variety.


In 2003, Giorgos Paterianakis continued developing the winery and, taking advantage of the magical view from the Domaine over the winegrowing region of Peza, built a modern wine-tasting facility right next to the winery. Combining tradition and a contemporary aesthetic, he created a modern venue ideal for wine tasting and events.


In 2008, the infrastructure was completed with the addition of four traditional apartments with a view over the Domaine’s vineyards. The guesthouses are located literally within the vineyards and were designed to house the Domaine’s friends, visitors and partners.


In 2012, the Domaine Paterianakis was passed onto the fourth generation, to the daughters of Giorgos Paterianakis, Emmanuela and Niki. Emmanuela, as an oenologist, has undertaken the wine production, while Niki, a chemical engineer, is responsible for the Domaine’s sales.


In 2014, the Moschato Spinas, a rare Cretan variety from Spina in Chania, a descendant of the well-known Moschato, appeared for the first time in Crete. Emmanuela and Niki believed in this small-grape variety and created a separate category of dry white wines.


In 2016, they presented the Assyrtiko, perhaps the most famous Greek white variety, with an alternative approach that showcases the potentials offered by the Cretan vine.


In 2018, after much experimentation, Emmanuella Paterianaki was the first to present in Crete the 3.14, in white, rosé and red, a complete range of wines with minimal intervention and without the addition of sulphite. This development sealed the Domaine’s philosophy and its strong belief in the natural showcasing of the region’s ecosystem.


In 2019, the “Paradise” was revived, the Domaine’s organic tsikoudia, which was first introduced in 1997, with the double distillation of the Cretan Kotsifali and Vidiano varieties.

The bee

The vine area where the Paterianakis family started the organic cultivation of grapes is located on a plateau at an altitude of 500 metres, in an area filled with herbs such as oregano, sage, thyme, lavender and honeysuckle, plants that are much loved by bees.
Emmanuel Paterianakis, who was one of the first organic growers, made sure to protect this natural beauty. One of the reasons he chose organic cultivation was so as not to disturb the sacred work of bees but also of beekeeping, which was one of the main occupations of the farmers of the region.

In addition to the valuable honey that they give us, bees have an important role in the global production of food as they help pollinate plants. Pollination happens when pollen is transferred from one flower to another flower of the same species, resulting in fertilisation, and fruit and seed production. At the same time, through its work and its superior intelligence, the bee constantly teaches us about the virtues of the collective and hard work for the benefit of society.
In this way, these two worlds, the world of bees and that of the wine tradition of the Paterianakis family, became one, and the bee became the symbol of the Domaine.

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