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“By having personal friends [who] wanted to have kosher wine and wanted to be involved with making kosher wine, it was something satisfying to see them for the first time try wine that they had worked on with their own hands to have made,” he said.

A passion and a lifestyle

For Mr. Papadopoulos, the passion for winemaking blossomed during his boyhood in Greece.

“We were always involved with making wine,” he said. “It was a hobby that became serious.”

His family had several acres of vineyards and produced wine simply because they love to drink it.

“It’s a passion, and it’s a lifestyle,” said Mr. Papadopoulos.

This passion is deeply rooted in the Papadopoulos family. Another vineyard just miles away from Molon Lave, Mediterranean Cellars, is owned by Mr. Papadopoulos’ family. Molon Lave is expected to be inherited by Mr. Papadopoulos’ daughters, who already have started working there.

The name of the vineyard comes from his Greek heritage. At the Battle of Thermopylae, Spartan King Leonidas, clearly outnumbered by attacking Persian forces, when asked to surrender said, “Molon Lave,” or “Come and get them.”

“I always wanted to use it because I’m Greek in a license plate or something, but I never did,” Mr. Papadopoulos said.

It quickly became the mantra for the vineyard, which opened its doors in 2009.

“It’s a historic phrase. It shows defiance. It shows a way of living and thinking,” he said.

Because of Virginia’s booming wine industry and the D.C. region’s wine market, Molon Lave is looking for growth.

It started with 9 acres of planted grapes on a 50-acre lot and has added 3 acres with plans to grow even more.

“The demand — and this is real and it’s not only us, it’s all Virginia wineries — the demand for grapes to make wine is greater than what we can produce, by far,” Mr. Papadopoulos said. “It’s not we need another 5 percent, we could use another 30 or 40 percent.”

In Virginia, where more than 200 vineyards have sprung up in recent decades, one might expect fierce competition for market share, but Mr. Papadopoulos said that’s not the case.

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