Thursday, February 18, 2016

February 18th 2016 Greek Wines at Ms Abbie and Mr Matt's home

February 18th 2016 - Greek Wines - hosted by Abbie & Matt

The wines will be curated for you (special Thank You to Eric at Le Caveau for helping us procure the wines and taste them in the best order). TWITs, please just bring yourself and $20/person to cover the cost of the wines.  Greek food will be provided.

Tasting Notes:

1)  2013 Kir-Yianni, Sparkling Rose, Akakies $ 25.00
100% Xinomavro, 11.5% alcohol

Winemaker’s Note:  “An intense mousse and a bright cherry color, pronounced aromas of ripe strawberry and cherry and an elegant acidity adding freshness while pairing harmoniously with the discrete presence of sugars create a wine that is at the same time dynamic and balanced.”

Terroir:  The grapes are sourced from the viticultural zone of Agios Panteleimon within the Amyndeon appellation in Florina, Northwestern Greece. The high altitude (600m) and the poor sandy soils of the area lead to the production of wines displaying finesse and a rare aromatic character. The four surrounding lakes that act as a buffer zone create perfect weather conditions for the cultivation of Xinomavro, more temperate than expected in this continental climate.

The great diversification of the vineyard blocks, leads to wide variations regarding the technological and phenolic ripeness of the grapes between the different vintages and requires a meticulous management of each vintage. Therefore, the grapes are classified at the moment of delivery at the winery by alcohol potential, acidity, phenols and bunch weight. This selection, which is carried out every year, allows to choose the proper wine making technique taking into account the quality and the different properties of the raw material

Winemaking:  The must is composed entirely of grapes carefully selected during the harvest on the basis of their content in sugars, phenols and acidity. The optimal point of maturity for the production of Akakies Sparkling is at 10.5 ABV. After delivery at the winery, and before the press, the grapes are chilled at 11-14 °C. Three pressings take place under continuous and gradually increasing pressure. For the production of Akakies Sparkling we use the second pressing. After the must is settled and racked the first alcoholic fermentation takes place. This fermentation is short and carried out using the traditional method. The wine stays and is stirred on its lees for a few months and then is transferred to the tanks for the second fermentation, during which the bubbles are formed and the wine gains 1% in alcohol. The wine will stay on its lees for 3-5 more months before it is bottled.

TWITs Notes:  Lovely Rose, good, light effervescence, touch of sweet, warm weather rose, i would buy this again.

2)  2015 Domaine Sigalas, Santorini, Assyrtiko – Athiri Blend $ 23.00
75% Assyrtiko, 25% Athiri, 13% alcohol

This is a delightful marriage of two grapes that are indigenous to Santorini: the Assyrtiko variety, intense, earthy, and clearly expressing the volcanic island soil; and the more aromatic, quince-scented Athiri variety. Athiri is believed to be a parent of the fascinating Ribolla Gialla grape, which is found mostly in Italy. As is the custom on Santorini, the vines are trained in basket shapes to protect the fruit from the intense wind. It's an elegant way of extracting great fruit from a wild landscape, and when you taste this wine, you'll be very glad they figured it out. Try with shrimp in herb sauce.

A clean and crisp gem of a wine with a nose of earthy minerals, volcanic ash, and slightly smoky aromatic quince/pear fruit. The palate is definitely mineral-forward with a backbone of stewed peppery fruits that is simply wonderful. This complex & refreshing wine would of course match Greek mixed meze.

Terroir:  On the ancient plain of Oia, in the island of Santorini, the winery of DOMAINE SIGALAS can be found. Here, the most vibrant variety of the Mediterranean zone, the Santorini Assyrtiko as well as the Aidani, Athiri, Mandilaria and the Mavrotragano are put to the best use possible, and with the proper respect to their organoleptic characteristics, the quality wines are produced which receive acclaim in international competitions, both in Greece and abroad.

TWITs Notes: minerally, very sauvignon blanc,

3) 2011 Domaine Sigalas, Santorini, Assyrtiko, Barrel Fermented, Magnum $ 87.00
100% Assyrtiko (60 year old vines), 13.5% alcohol

Vinification: Typical, white wine vinification techniques, which take place in French, oak barrels of 225Lt and 500Lt. New oak is used, at a % of 30 and the rest is of 2nd or 3rd use. The “sur lies” method is applicated for 6-8 months.

Colour: Yellow, with golden hues.

Nose: Complex, with citrus and minerality, harmonically balanced with discreet vanilla essences and tobacco.

Taste: Round and smooth in mouth with the acidity, being the back - bone, that allows it to age. More petrol aromas, nuts and honey-suckle appear in aged Assyrtikos, like the German and Alsatian Rieslings.

TWITs Notes: petrol, minerality, riesling-ish, golden, more aged, spice on it, delicious.

4)  2011 Domaine Gioulis Sofos ‘The Wise One’, Korinthos, Greece $ 16.00
50% Agioritiko, 50% Cabernet, 13% alcohol

Organic, non-GMO wine, The Agiorgitiko vineyard is located in Klementi village which is neighboring with Nemea P.D.O., the largest red appellation of Greece, home of the Agiorgitiko grape.
The vineyard has a south-west orientation and the altitude of 800 metres.  The Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard is located on the slopes opposite of the village of Klimenti. It has a northeast orientation and an altitude of 850 metres.  The soil is calcareous clay for both vineyards.

Vinification: Traditional red wine vinification; separately for each variety. Then the alcoholic fermentation takes place and the Cabernet Sauvignon ages for 6 months in French oak casks. The blending of the varieties takes place after the fermentation.  Ageing: for about 20 months in steel tanks to keep the flavors fresh

Tasting notes: Red ruby color with violet hues. The nose has aromas of mature blackberries, raspberries and sweet spices. The palate has a well balanced acidity and a medium plus body; fragrant of fresh blackcurrant – blackberry fruit, red pepper and hints of black chocolate.

"The red SOFOS has a deep ruby colour with aromas of plum, sour cherry and hints of truffle and oak. In the palate we found medium plus acidity, soft tannins and a great complexity of flavours such as dried plum, raisin and notes of wet leaves and tobacco. It is a quality red wine which is ready to drink but also with a good potential of ageing. It combines the spicy and fruity aromas of the indigenous Agiorgitiko with the structure and the complexity of the famous Cabernet Sauvignon." - Konstantinos Lazarakis

TWITs Notes:  Gamay on steroids, chewy, beaujolais-like, jammy, fruit-leather, cherry, fig, it's really nice, mountain fruits, this calls for dirty food, sticky, like a hot dog or hush puppies, should pair with savory food, steak, heavily marinated beef, can take some strong flavor.

5)  2013 Douloufakis, Dafnios Dafnes Liatiko, Crete $ 19.00
100% Liatiko, 13.5% alcohol

“Dafnios, from the name of our village, Dafnes.Dafnes, Crete, 350 metres altitude. The indigenous variety "Liatiko" is mainly found in Dafnes and offers dry wines but also sweet, sun-dried wines. The most prized variety of the region of Dafnes is liatiko, which is named after the month of July, in reference to its early ripening. It produces a light- to mid-weight red that can be made into a dry or sweet wine, depending on the appellation regulations. This example, from the multi-generational, organic-certified Douloufakis winery, is dry and gently aromatic, and a nice wine to pair with an old family recipe for moussaka

Classic red vinification with fermentation at 18⁰C in stainless steel tanks. Aged in 2nd and 3rd year used French oak barrels, for 9 months.

Liatiko will fascinate every restless wine lover who will discover and enjoy this traditional and rare wine. Ruby color with brown hints. Fruity, spicy nose. Round mellow texture. Very stylish and mouth filling wine.

TWITs Notes: a Creten wine, very good, fantastic, great value, spice, dense fruit, nice gentle pull, gentle grip, I like this the least, but it's still good.  smoked meats, BBQ. stronger nose,

6)  2011 Kir-Yianni Naoussa Ramnista $30.00
100% Xinomavro, 13.5% alcohol

Winemaker’s Notes: Aromas of ripe strawberry, cherry and black pepper, along with varietal and barrel-aging notes of liquorice and ginger, robust tannins offering a firm structure and a lingering, fruity finish compose the typical expression of a Xinomavro harvested in an outstanding year.

Terroir:  Selected vineyard blocks within the private vineyards of Kir-Yianni Estate in Yianakohori.  The vineyards used for Ramnista have an overall southeast exposure at an altitude of 280-330 m. Rainfall is abundant during the winter months, but summers are so dry that regulated drip irrigation is applied to prevent water stress. Vine density ranges from 3,500 to 4,000 per hectare and the average crop yield is maintained below 2.5 kg per vine. For "Ramnista" we use grapes mostly from the vineyard blocks in the lower pH range and with lighter soil types to maximize the aromatic intensity and complexity.The grapes are handpicked and sorted on a conveyor belt before crush. After a six–day pre-fermentation cold soak at 8-10° C, the must undergoes a 12-15 day fermentation at controlled temperatures of no more than 25°C. Roughly one third of the wine ferments in open-top tanks with pigeage. The final blend is made five months after harvest and the last racking takes place about six months later. Both French and American barrels are used, 25% of which is new oak, and about 25% 500-lt casks. The wine is filtered very lightly.

Winemaking: 16 months in 225-lt and 500-lt French and American oak casks plus further ageing in bottle for another 6 months.  After three consecutive years of rather average quality, it looks like in 2011 Xinomavro comes back to its very high standards. This year the weather helped the grapes to reach good levels of phenolic maturity with relatively low potential alcohol, which is one of the things that we try to achieve during the last years. After a rainy month of May, the long period that followed was dry but with no extreme temperatures. As a result, the grapes ripened well, while the absence of heat waves during summer resulted in grapes with very good levels of acidity, which, in their turn, gave wines with long aging potential. It seems that 2011, just like 1994 and 2001, will be one of these years that only come once in a decade!

TWITs Notes:  tropical fruit nose, lovely nose, not as fond of the finish, cellar it awhile.

7) 2012 Paranga Kir-Yianni - $16.99 @ Toco Giant
50% xinomavro, 25% merlot, 25% syrah - 13.5% alcohol
funky nose, smells French, delicious! dry.

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