jamie goode's wine blog

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Greek wines in Westminster

Went into town this afternoon for the Wine Roads of Northern Greece tasting. It was held in Westminster School, in the shadow of Westminster Abbey. It must be amazing going to school in such a historic location.

The wines were pretty good. If anything, the fault was that some of the red wines were too modern and polished, with all their personality ironed out. My favourites?

Gerovassiliou's whites are world class: Malagousia and Viognier. Both wines are stunningly good.

Kir-Yianni's reds are brilliant: Dyo Elies is modern but delicious with lots of personality; Ramnista is a serious expression of Xinomavro that tastes like top-flight Barolo; Diaporos is equally good - similar but with a touch more intensity.

Finally, Tsantalis' Rapsani Reserve Mount Olympus is a brilliant red that's sweet and aromatic with minerals, spice, dark cherry and raspberry characters. Really serious.

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Monday, May 12, 2008

Two wines from Cyprus

Always nice to try something different, although I'm anxious not to give excessive coverage to wines that are novel over better wines that aren't (if you see what I mean).

These two wines are from Cyprus, and are the result of a collaboration between Sodap (a large co-operative winery) and the Co-op (UK retailer). Both are priced 3.99, and represent good value for money, although I'm not sure exactly how commercial they are.

Island Vines White 2006 Cyprus
A blend of the Xynisteri, Ugni Blanc, Malvasia Lunga and Gordo grape varieties. This is quite rich and minerally, with taut savoury, herby, citrussy fruit and good acidity, as well as a slightly grippy persistency on the palate. It's very fresh, but there's depth here, too. A bright unoaked white that's highly food compatible. You'd expect the 2007 to be on the market now, which would have added freshness, but this is still a very appealing white wine with a hint of seriousness. 87/100 (3.99 Co-op)

Island Vines Red 2006 Cyprus
A blend of Carignan, Alicante, Mavro, Mataro and Cabernet Sauvignon. There's sweet, slightly baked jammy, raisined fruit here, but this is countered by some peppery, spicy freshness. It's quite tasty, though: the fruit remains to the fore, and the rather grippy, peppery structure, leading to a drying finish, serves to counter the sweeter, more-ripe elements of the wine. Overall, a satisfying, grippy, peppery red that's very food friendly. 84/100 (3.99 Co-op)

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