...ideal climatic conditions for viticulture...
The Domaine Hatzimichalis lies approximately 140km north of Athens in the valley of Atalanti, between the mountains of Knimida and Chlomo, the foot of Mt Parnassus and Euboean Gulf.
The story of the Domaine starts in 1973. The region’s rich winemaking tradition attests to its ideal vine-growing conditions over the centuries. Moreover, the location of the valley makes for some ideal climatic conditions for viticulture: the cool currents from Mt Parnassus keep temperatures from rising too high while the sea breeze from the Euboean Gulf keeps winter frost at bay.
Today, 220 hectares of private owned vineyards at selected high- or low-lying terroirs, which enjoy the unique local microclimate, make up the ‘spine’ of the Estate, which places great emphasis on securing the very best raw material by carefully selecting its terroirs, planting the right varieties (both Greek and cosmopolitan) in the right pieces of land and providing every viticultural care required. It is an integrated winemaking facility as it comprises vineyards, a winery, a bottling plant and climate-controlled cellars for wine aging.
The winery lies among the vineyards and combines high-technology equipment with the proper methods and practices for quality winemaking. The air-conditioned cellars host over 2,500 small French oak barriques under conditions of controlled temperature and humidity.
As part of the cultural interests of the Domaine Hatzimichalis, but also thanks to Dimitris Hatzimichalis’s firm belief that the development of a wine culture in Greece is a collective responsibility, the Atalanti winery is open to visitors as per the European and international standards. The name “Forum: Wine and Culture” was selected to designate the cultural activities of the Estate.
This winery has been designed as a ‘living museum’ where past – in the form of exhibitions which showcase Greek rich oenological tradition – and present – the production of quality wines employing modern technology – meet in order to lead to an even better future.
A tour of the production facilities is followed by a presentation of the state-of-the-art bottling plant and a small exhibition on the history of glass and cork. The tour around the Domaine’s new underground cellars includes a replica of a traditional cooper’s workshop, an exhibition about wine transporting and storage over the centuries and a display of winemaking tools from the 19th century. Visitors can taste the exclusive wines in the multi-purpose hall, where they can also see our collection of bottle-openers or next to the exhibition-vineyard, where they can also take a look at the copy of an ancient pottery kiln – another piece of testimony to the region’s long history.
The facilities also include indoor and outdoor reception areas, a shop, a small amphitheatre which is available for artistic and educational activities, chapel and a multi-purpose hall which can be booked for conferences, seminars and other events. It can also undertake to organise by prior arrangement a range of agrotourism activities such as bicycle rides through the vineyards, environmental walks, educational programmes for schools and families and so on.