Saturday, May 24, 2014

#DRINKGREEKWINES: New Greek Wines Tasting NYC 2014 Part 1


New Wines of Greece-featured wineries, producers and importers who -judging by what we tasted, should easily convince the serious and casual wine drinkers everywhere-to select/order a glass/bottle from this vacation destination-when not there…and of course, when not dining in a Greek restaurant.


Given the quality-the prices -averaging in the $12.00-$17 retail range= outstanding values….and coming from many indigenous varieties of distinctive, unconventional character (Adani, Athiri, Debina, Malagousia, Robola, Savatiano, Roditis , the Muscat family of Samos (a few of the whites), Limnio, Kosifli, Mandilaria and Agiorgitiko (a few of the reds)… and familiar international grapes (Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot-reds... Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, semillon (whites)…that transport tasters to the unique terroir/climate locales that characterize every grape type, harvest, aging ---and personalities of the vintages. 

Northern, Central, Peloponnese and Ionian, the Aegean Islands, and Crete-the main region/appellations-with rather different weather patterns and altitudes---also decisive factors with regards to what we tasted.

WHAT ELSE: We tried mostly the white wines-that generally speaking-tended to be refreshingly light-medium bodies, crisp-moderate acids with mineral/fruit/spicy hints- with wonderful aromas and balanced finishes ----ideal to pair with food, and ready to consume NOW. Availability across the Pond-is growing, yet we would say the terroir driven wines form Greece-come from relatively speaking, many small scale producers, not 2-3 giants.

Big Revelation-the sparkling wines. Yummy.
Amethystos White 2013-Sauvignon Blanc, Assyrtiko, Semillon grapes

Domaine Costa Lazaridi-Nestor Imports

Arvanitidis Estate-from Thessaloniki

Greek Wine Cellars-Nestor Imports-one the older Greek wineries-from 1895-with modern methods and technologies used in harvesting/maturing grapes form different parts of Greece

Kouros Nemea-Agiorgitiko grape-dry red -aged in dry oak

fabulous sipping/ dessert wine-Kouritaki Muscat-Samos nice amber-honey color 
Robola of Cephalonia -Robola grape-holding crisp, high acid with citrus overtones Classic-from the island of Cephalonia on the left, Costas Bazigos – Director and Chemist

Robola Cooperative-San Gerasimo clean crisp white-grapefruit, floral honey aromas

Kitma Papaioannou-organic dry red wine Agiorgitiko grape-2005, 2006 both complex spicy vanilla hints full balance
Papagiannakos Winery
Dimitris L. Hatzimichalis--a treat-the producer! Turkey on the label referenced-we asked----until the vines were ready for quality grapes…Turkeys were imported-as a way to pay the bills.

Estate Hazimichichalis-red dry regional wine from  Central Greece-deep dense  well structured

Domaine Skoros-Mega Oenos 2008-full b0dy red-rich, spicy/fruit berries

Domaine Sigalas-on gorgeous island of Santorini-Kavalieror 2012-Assyritiko grape-old vines

Santo Wines- delicious Santos Brut sparkling wine made from 100% Santorini Assyrtiko grape. Pair this with mature cheeses, sushi, fish-or on its own. A big wow.

also from Santo Wines Vinsanto-2005 sweet dessert wine-great raison-y color from the sun dried grapes Assyrtiko and Aidani of Santorini. Award winning and rich taste of dried fruits and caramel

Porto Carras

Porto Carras -Dry Red-Limnio 2011-ruby red spicy with blackberry fruits-aged in French oak barrels

Deep purple color-Magnus Baccata-Porto Carras-blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Limnio.

Alexakis Vidiano white wine -crisp tropical fruits, citrus from Vidiano grape-from largest winery in Crete-family owned

Femina-pale gold color-from Douloufakis family owned winery-Crete-gold medal winner

Nemea Lantides P.D.O. -Dry Red-rich -gentle tannins-from  French trained wine producer, Panos Lantides

Moschofilero Lantides-Peloponnese dry white wine-100% Moschofilero grape-fresh and aromatic