Thursday, June 10, 2010
Santorini Assyrtiko 2008
BrandAction Team's account is the Santo Wines from Santorini. SantoWines is a 2,500 member cooperative dating back to 1947 and is the largest wine producer on the Greek island. Myth has it that Santorini was made from a handful of dust dropped into the Aegean Sea. Santorini wines date back to the 3rd millennium B.C. as evidenced from vines and grape drawings that have been exhumed by archaeologist. This wine is made from 100% assyrtiko grapes, which is a new varietal for us, so I had to do a little research. The grapes are golden yellow with lots of acidity. 80% of the grapes grown in Santorini are assyrtiko. Many get blended with other grapes, as well as used for dessert wines. The vines are grown and pruned in a low circular format just above ground level, which is known as kouloura, instead of the higher trellises normally seen. This helps prevent the vines from being damaged from the high winds off the sea. Also, the vines are planted in a very lava rich soil which, unfortunately, seemed to give the wine a unusual stony aftertaste. The nose on this wine is of slightly fragrant flowers with some honey and herbs. On the palate, there were plenty of citrus flavors that reminded me a bit of a French Sauternes, but the flavors were extremely short lived and then you are hit with the aftertaste I mentioned. Overall, for our tastes, this was an interesting wine to try but we probably would not go out of our way to find it. We served is with tilapia which was a good pairing for this wine. I would probably serve it with some shell fish or a mild white fish. Thanks Constance for the opportunity to try this Greek wine. The Santorini Assyrtiko 2008 retails for about $15.