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25 January 2023

Athanasiou Fleurs d' Amour - sparkling excellence in Nemea

Βy Yiannis Karakasis MW

Sparkling wines have become all the more fashionable in Greece owing to the success of specialists like Karanika and Tselepos (who already produce another 100% Agiorgitiko sparkling wine in Tripoli, Arcadia), which has motivated new promising efforts. ''I've always wanted to explore the boundaries of Nemea Agiorgitiko'' says Michalis Athanasiou, winemaker at Athanasiou winery in Nemea, pointing out that his vision was to produce something really extraordinary. A Selosse Champagne served as an inspiration. 

''To me, this is not just another wine, but a milestone for Nemea, as this is the first time that a sparkling wine is born in that area with centuries of history in wine production,'' he continues. The fruit is sourced from the highlands of Asprokabos, at 900 m elevation, and comes from the 2018 vintage. Nevertheless, legislation had yet to predict the production of sparkling wines in Corinth, which means he cannot mention the vintage or the variety on the label. 

True to its name,'' fleurs'' (flowers), the wine opens up with unexpected aromas of roses supported by subtle toasty notes and fresh red fruit. Creamy but elegant, with 40 months on the lees, providing a seamless texture and impressive complexity. Tight, with a fine mousse that expands across the palate on the finish. A superbly made ''Methode Traditionelle'' Agiorgitiko full of red fruit flavour and excellent balance, moving forward the discussion of sparkling wines from Nemea. (ΥΚ)

(12.50% abv, Total Acidity(g/lt): 7.3, pH: 3.20, Residual sugars(g/lt): 9, Vineyard: Highlands of Corinth, Altitude: 880m, harvest mid-September, everything is done by hand/ riddling takes 45 days, 1008 bottles produced, suggested retail price 34 euros)

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