The Estate

La Tour Melas is set in 11 hectares near the village of Achinos in central Greece,
two and half hours drive north of Athens. On an altitude of 300m, the property
is surrounded by ancient, untouched oak forests, overlooking the Aegean Sea .
In 2001, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot vines were imported from France
and planted. Initially, a stone water cistern was constructed for irrigating the young
vines. Subsequent expansion works gave rise to the tower ‘La Tour Melas’.

The Vineyard

Nestled on the side of a valley, on clay limestone soil, at 180 meters altitude, the area is sloped South East. This allows the sea breeze to cool the vines during the day, while the rocky terrain keeps the vines warm at night, thus creating an ideal micro-climate.

Uncompromising standards result in vines producing only 30-50 hectolitres per hectare – A scarce yield, especially considering the dense planting. This density combined with the steepness of the vineyards results in less water per vine, hence more concentrated grape juice. Rigorous pruning (guyot simple) further increases concentration. Harvest by hand allows us to pick only the healthiest and most mature bunches with a minimum of stress to vine, fruit and soil.

We use biodynamic organic methods and treat the vineyard as a unified organism. This balances the interrelationship of soil, plants and animals as a self-nourishing system without external input. Flocks of geese and sheep graze the vineyard in winter to keep weeds in control, and our bees begin pollinating the surrounding flowers in spring. In harmony with the astronomical planting calendar, we choose the precise phase of the moon for cultivating, pruning, harvesting, and even for filling bottles and racking barrels.

The Winery

Wine production has essentially four stages.

  1. Harvesting & destemming
  2. Fermenting in temperature controlled vats
  3. Aging for 22 months in new French oak barrels
  4. Bottling, storing, labelling and crating

Taking these steps into consideration, we designed a temperature controlled underground structure with four levels. The wine flows by gravity from one step to the next, suitably leaving little need for pumps.

State of the art destemmers and sorters prevent injury to the stems, while keeping the berries intact, allowing for an extended, three to four week-long ‘skin contact (Maceration). Since 2012 La Tour Melas has been using open top 225 Litre barrels to ferment the wine. Fermentation in the barrel adds intense aromas to the must and berries. This helps integrate the wood and creates a round wine with extended finish.

The wine flows directly from the vats into the barrels, and then to the bottles. We do not use filters (fining). The gravity flow is gentle and causes no bubbles. Oak barrels for aging are supplied by Seguin Moreau, Saury, Darnajou, and Taransaud. La Tour Melas has 90% new barrels every year.

Bottling is done by hand, and correct corking requires repeated inspection of each cork during the process. The bottles rest thereafter in our underground cellars for at least 6 months prior to shipping.

Contact & Visit

“La Tour Melas” is situated in central Greece, 80km from Mount Parnassos above the ancient village of Echinos The vineyard faces south, surrounded by virgin oak forest, and olive groves. The easiest way to reach “La Tour Melas” is to head from Lamia (a city 220 Klms north of Athens) towards Thessaloniki, using the highway E75. 33 Klms later you will arrive to the village of Achinos, which is the modern name of the ancient Echinos. Ask for “La Tour Melas” or in Greek “O Pyrgos tou Mela”. You are just 5 Klms away.

For more information please contact us at:

Address: La Tour Melas 35300 Achinos Greece
Tel +306944756556
Tel +30 694 285 8839
Fax: +302238041288