The story behind this unusual wine dates back to the time of the Crusades. The island of Cyprus was then a favourite resting ground for Crusades returning from battle and later became a centre for the Knights of the Order of St.John. It was the members of this order who discovered a wine that was been produced in the Troodos Mountains. This wine they named Commanderie after their headquarters, finding it to be not only an excellent drink but also to possess therapeutic properties.
Estienne de Lusignan described Commandaria St.John in 1572 A.D., recording in his book “Descriptions of the island of Cyprus”: “There is a certain grapevine…which ripens at the end of July, whose grapes are not gathered until the end of September. They [the grapes] are put
on the roofs the space of three days…then trodden and the pips and stalks removed before fermentation.”Commandaria St. John is then aged in large earthenware jars buried in the ground and fortified with grape brandy.
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Other reviews... Tawny colour with a golden rim. Intense bouquet with aromas of dried fruits, oak and a hint of caramel. Luscious, sweet palate displaying dried fruits and spice, finishing with a plummy aftertaste. A most affordable and pleasant aperitif or desert wine. Serve at room temperature. 14.5% alc./vol.