Cirò Wine, or "Barolo of the South”, as defined by Hugh Johnson, the British author of the famous book The World Atlas of Wine, is Calabria’s most well-known wine. Its history dates back to the first landing of the Greek colonists on the Calabrian coast, where they were so impressed with the fertility of the vineyards that they began calling the region “Enotria”, or rather the “land of wine".
Well aware that a piece of land cultivated with the grapevine was worth six times a field of grain, the Greeks recognized the enormous value of these vineyards. In fact, it is believed that a number of vines found throughout Calabria, as well as in certain areas of the rest of Italy, are of Greek origins, such as gaglioppo, mantonico and greco bianco.
“Krimisa”, an ancestor of the modern day Cirò Wine, became the official wine of the Olympics during the Greek era and was probably the first instance of a sponsor, as we would define the term today.It would appear that six time Olympic champion, Milo of Kroton, was a big fan of this wine, which was traditionally offered to the athletes who returned home victorious following the competitions in Olympia.
Today, Cirò wine is produced in a small area north of the province of Crotone and is exported worldwide. The red is particularly highly acclaimed thanks to its excellent quality and high alcohol content, with an average of 13.5%.