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Throughout the world Santorini is known as a gifted island, but this characterization goes far beyond the surface. Besides being a magnificent sight before visitors’ eyes, the island can indulge the rest of their senses once they start an ambrosial journey among the unique tastes of Santorini that will intrigue their palate. What Santorini’s products lack in quantity, they make up in quality and rich flavor. This is the outcome of the fertile volcanic land, the dry soil and the climate with high temperatures and strong winds; a combination that creates unique products which are only cultivated in Santorini or products with special distinctive flavors. Amazingly, the great volcanic eruption, a destructive force, has brought about this miracle; the fruitful agricultural areas of Santorini that give its products an explosive taste!

The main traditional products of Santorini are the following:

Cherry Tomato: Passionate red color, small size (the reason for its name as it resembles a cherry), thick skin and bitter-sweet flavor are the characteristics of this product that only grows in Santorini and has gained a PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) recognition. Its rich juicy body and unique flavor that have made it the most popular product of Santorini is a result of the dry, volcanic soil which is suitable for its cultivation as it doesn’t need much water. Cherry tomato can be savored fresh in salads, sun-dried, canned, as a tomato paste or even as a spoon sweet. Santorini’s specialty that visitors should definitely taste is the tomato fritters, available in every tavern.

White Eggplant: A rare type of eggplant that is distinguished by its white color, shape, rich flesh and fruity and mild flavor, much sweeter than the common purple eggplant, with very few seeds. It can be tasted in many forms and it is a must that you try it while on the island; raw in salads, fried, as a delicious paste called melitzanosalata and, of course, as the main ingredient in the famed Greek specialty, moussaka.

Capers: This special Greek product comes from a bush that grows in the wild and you can find it in the most peculiar places in Santorini, for example hanging from the caldera cliffs or from the walls of the houses. They are small flower buds that are used in a variety of recipes to spice them up, as they are known for their particularly piquant flavor. They are added as a finishing touch in the famous Greek salad or on top of pureed split peas (fava), dishes that will arouse your senses, as the wild capers are known for their savory sea-bitter taste. You can take this miraculous savor home by buying a jar of pickled capers.

Split Peas (fava): You can find it in every traditional tavern of the island as a starter, served as a velvety puree. It is often garnished with onions, herbs and local capers, or sometimes with Greek olives. The delicious taste, the silky texture and its easy cooking are the three elements that make it extremely popular. It is probably the oldest traditional product of Santorini, around 3,500 years of cultivation, and this specific tastier variety, with fuller flavor than any other fava, can only be found in Santorini. Fava, like cherry tomato, has been classified as a product with Protected Designation of Origin (P.D.O.).

Katsouni (cucumber): A slightly different kind of cucumber named after the inhabitants of Santorini. It is smaller, thicker, cooler and lighter than the common cucumber and has some seeds. It is a necessary ingredient in the traditional Greek salad, plus it makes a great spoon sweet.

Chloro (cheese): It is a special homemade, sour cheese with creamy texture, made from goat milk. The unusual flavor and the fact that it is hard to find, make it a sought-after product of Santorini that cannot be found anywhere else.

Wine: Santorinian wine is the star of its traditional products with a Protected Designation of Origin (P.D.O.) status. The island, which is full of vineyards, has a long tradition in winemaking and thanks to the rich, volcanic ground it produces unique varieties with exemplary flavors and aromas. Vinsanto, Assyrtiko and Nykteri are just some of the varieties than stand out. Visitors shouldn’t miss the opportunity to indulge in a culinary journey by visiting one of the remarkable wineries, as well as taking a few bottles with them so that they can relive the original flavor of Santorini at home.