08 July 2017

Greek wines to try this summer: a selection Pt1

A selection of some of the most exciting wines I have tasted the last few weeks that capture the essence of what Greek wine is: being authentic, distinctive and food versatile. All prices are suggested retail in domestic market.

Whites and Rosé 

Toinos Malagousia 2016, Tinos

( Vines are planted at 450 m at Falatados, Tinos. 55 hl/ha, 6 months on the lees) Exciting nose combining mineral notes with lemon zest, this is not your ordinary Malagousia and it shows. Lightly and discretely perfumed. Elegant, refreshing but with flesh on the palate. Lots of flavour with just 11% abv. 90/100 (€ 23)

Manousakis Assyrtiko 2016, Crete

(Vines are planted at 320 m high in mainly schist soils, stainless steel fermentation with 4 m sur lies, 7.500 bottles) Impressively complex nose with high intensity of minerality along stone fruit and some creamy undertones. Medium to full bodied, more Santorini than mainland Greece, for sure coming from the islands. Nice first effort. Brilliant label with illustration of winemaker Kostas Galanis. 91/100 (€ 11)

Bosinakis Moschofilero Iereia 2016, Peloponnese

(Single vineyard Spassolakas at 650 to 700 m elevation in Arcadia. Skin contact for 24 hrs to acquire this lovely light pink colour. Produced in 5.000 bottles) An explosion of floral scents with jasmine, roses, even violets around a core of spices and citrus fruit. Light, elegant with bright acidity and rewarding finish. 89+/100 (€ 11)

Skin contact on the rise

Mylonas Naked Truth 2016, Attica

(Single vineyard Vouno, 12.6 hl/ha, 10 days with the skins, addition of just 20 mg/lt during bottling, total SO2 23 mg/lt, 1400 bottles produced). Pale gold colour. Lemon blossom quite straighforward on the nose, touch of creamy biscuits. Superb balance on palate like walking on a fine line and wanting to be on the safe side. Smooth tannins, natural - like finish. Oily, has weight and complexity. 90+/100 (€ 11)

Karamolegos Mysterio/14 2016, PDO Santorini

(The first skin contact Santorini has seen 14 days with the skins, single vineyard from Pyrgos, indigenous yeasts, tiny addition of SO2 during bottling only, total SO2 40 mg/lt, 10 months maturation with gross lees, 1100 bottles produced). Decanting suggested. Gold orange colour. Gorgeous aromatics on the nose with chamomile, pears, bergamot and cardamom. Firm, structured with medium tannins and fresh acidity. Another dimension for Santorini. 91+/100

Kamara Nimbus Ritinitis Orange, Macedonia

(Skin contact Assyrtiko for 5-7 days, indigenous fermentation, unfiltered , no SO2 added). This is a mind-blowing Ritinitis wine, a word I prefer instead of Retsina since we need to find a way to differentiate the cheap stuff from premium efforts. Thyme and oregano on the nose along discrete pine notes. Misses only in freshness perhaps but overall very rewarding opening a new horizon for the R word. 92/100 (€ 20)

The reds

Dougos Rapsani 2014, PDO Rapsani

The entry level Rapsani of Dougos (Xinomavro based)  overdelivers for its price point offering wonderful aromatics of herbs, raspberries and cherries along some pungent spicy notes. Palate is savoury and elegant with considerable freshness, slightly grippy tannins and fantastic oak handling. 91/100 (€ 10)

Moraitis Sillogi 2013, PDO Paros

A fascinating blend of indigenous Mavro Athiri and Mavro Aidani with gorgeous aromatics, savoury tannic spine and ultra long finish. A revelation tasted a month ago in the organic festival in Athens. Take a ride on the wild side of Greek reds. Current vintage will be 2014, 7000 bottles. 92+/100  (€ 14)

All wines are available to order through Greece and Grapes, the largest online e-shop specializing exclusively in Greek wines.

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