Monthly Archives: February 2017

Barolo Chinato

A most curious aromatic wine, Barolo Chinato (of Piedmont and Protected Origin infamy in Italy) is essentially a red wine spiked with quinine. It may sound like you don’t need medication for malaria, but…maybe you do? I can’t express how much of a pleasant surprise this was for me–burnt orange peel and violets on the […]
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Assyrtiko

I feel like this is the one wine people know outside of Greece. The new “It” wine of Greece, which I understand: it’s indigenous to Santorini, and so beauty births beauty unto itself. Orange blossom, peach, and an elegant almond finish. Perfect for those cold dips and shell fish!

Nostos

I love seeing this–classic blends as an experiment outside of their “home”. Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, and Rousanne. All classic South Rhone grapes from France, except they’re grown on the western end of Crete by Chania. This is a wine doppelganger: superficially similar, except that it has a distinct personality you could¬†miss if you judged it […]
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Malvasia

I have written about Malvasia before. It’s a grape I came across in volcanic soil in the Canary Islands, and it is perfect for the experience you would get there. The same in Crete–this grape just WORKS here. Lime zest, fresh cut grass, castelveltrano olives (those buttery dark green ones). On the fertile island of […]
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Vinsanto

Holy wine. Ok, not literally, maybe just a signature sweet wine (vin) from Santorini (santo). This epic name is more closely associated with Italy, although the origins are Greek. Bragging rights aside, this sweet wine was the perfect touch for every meal in Greece. Raisinated grapes, sugar coated prunes, and baking spice. It’s the delicious […]
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Mantilari

A native grape of Crete, and by far the most curious one I came across. Mantilari is incredibly savoury. This wine literally tasted like fresh basil and grilled bacon. I repeat, fresh basil and grilled bacon. I sniffed, sipped, and smacked this wine for over an hour to make sure my senses weren’t playing a […]
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Vidiano

“Catch me if you can”. Never heard of it. Tried it. Can’t get enough. Let me just say that the Isle of Crete is a bastion of fertility: olive and citrus trees, grape vines, and sheep for daaaaaaaays. Vidiano is an Old, Old World grape grown on Crete for thousands of years. There’s a bit […]
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Retsina

Consider this more Public Service Announcement than review. Retsina is a style of wine in Greece that has been spike with pine resin. There is a historical basis for this going back to before Jesus was born… Old habits die hard, or course. Retsina is, in fact, a protected original product in the eyes of […]
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Xinomavro Blend

A grape so worthy, I will write about it twice. This is the Greek wine that is part of the personal collection now. The spiciness of Xinomavro combined with the density of Syrah and fruit of Merlot put this wine in the Heavyweight class. Dense, inky, insanely good for the price. Plum, black cherry, blueberry, […]
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Xinomavro

Mythical. Epic. This is the grape that captured my heart like Helen in the Trojan War. Xinomavro has some richness and texture to it. But what I love most is that it’s spicy–stamps down its foot and knocks you back. Black fruit, cassis, loads of black pepper and violets.¬†Anytime I ordered Xinomavro in Greece, the […]
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