2018 GREEK COLLECTION
Santorini / Aegean Islands, Greece
Established in 1903, Estate Argyros is run by Matthew Argyros, 4th generation of winemakers. Based in Episkopi Santorini, the winery owns 42ha of vineyards with ungrafted -original rootstock – phylloxera safe plants averaging 70 years old, including some of the oldest vines on the island which are over 200 years old. Their philosophy is to craft outstanding boutique wines based only on the indigenous varieties of Santorini, such as Assyrtiko, Aidani & Mavrotragano. They focus on wines of great subtlety, character, balance and elegance with an uncompromising commitment to quality.
Winemaker: Viannis Argyros
It was at the beginning of the last century
— 1919, that the first generation Papagiannakos field the very first barrel. And from that moment through loving care and with the inherited wisdom of ancient wine-making traditions, the Papagiannakos family rapidly gains respect and renown for the fine quality of wine they produce.
Ever since the 1960s, the new Papagiannakos generation, in accordance with tradition and with the adoption of more modern wine producing methods, redefines the wine making process bringing it to the third millennium.
Native and foreign grape varieties co-exist in this vineyard, the largest in Greece today, with white varieties, Savatiano, Malagouzia and Roditis prevailing. These varieties flourish in Attica’s environment capturing 80% of today’s vineyards. However, red varieties such as Agiorgitiko and Merlot are also cultivated with great success producing several of Greece’s best red wines.
By tradition Attica was also the home of retsina
— particularly in the Mesogaia district.
Retsina’s unique flavor makes it an excellent accompaniment for Mediterranean cuisine.
Surrounded by sea, Atticas’s mild winters and cool summers provide ideal conditions of viticulture. Here the combination of vineyard, soil, climate give us a favorable environment.
The region’s Mediterranean climate is distinguished by legendary sunlight, the greatest in Greece, with average annual temperature of 18oC. Frost is nonexistent and phenomena such as snow, hail and storms are rare. Attica’s winds are mild to average. The northerly “Meltemi” winds and sea breezes dominate the coastal zone in the summer lowering the temperature. It was not by chance that the ancient Greeks settled in this region.
The landscape of East Attican vineyards is varying and made up of undulating hills and hidden streams. The terroir is a combination of clay, sand and gravel which enables rainwater to drain well and the air to circulate in the soil.
Winemaker: Vassilis Papagiannakos
Tyrnavos / Thesselay, Greece
A unique winery for its standards Domaine Zafeirakis was established in Tyrnavos region in 2012. The Zafeiraki Winery is located in region ‘Palaiomylos’ in Tyrnavos.
The soil is characterized as clay with high concentration of flint stone. With respect to the environment, their aim is to highlight the unique micro-climate in the region of Tyrnavos.
The methodology of the bio-culture in our vineyards together with the non-use of specific fermentation processes and enzymes in the production contribute to this effort.
The Zafeirakis family has been involved with the viticulture in the area of Tyrnavos for more than 100 years. Christos Zafeirakis is a fourth generation winemaker. Today he presides over 8 hectares of carefully tended organic vines and is one of the champions of the rare and local variety, Limniona.
‘Christos Zafeirakis is making beautiful, organic wines at Domaine Zafeirakis in Thessaly, near the foothills of Mount Olympus. With the Zafeirakis Chardonnay, Christos gives the grape an astonishing make-over, resulting in a wine with riesling- like acidity and flavours of lemon curd. All across Greece winemakers are producing impressive rosé wines, but the Zafeirakis Rosé from local limniona grapes is a stand-out, with aromas of sherbet and minerality in the mouth. Rare limniona grapes is definitely the break-out grape for Christos, and one of his most considered wines (from a comprehensive list) is the Zafeirakis Limniona. “I came to better understand the soil in my vineyard, and limniona as a varietal, by making this wine,” he says. “Its my choice not to make the wine loud and alcoholic, but to keep it subtle.” Yes the wine is gentle, silky and reminiscent of a fine pinot noir – much like
the man himself’.
Sally Wilson — Alquimie Magazine
Winemaker: Christos Zafeirakis
Located in the centre of Crete, the Douloufakis winery now looked after by third generation Nikos and who has put this estate on the world map. The privately owned vineyards are situated on hill slopes at an altitude of 350 meters and the cultivation is done by hands as well as by mechanical means. They cover 20 hectares and are located within the vine region of Dafnes, on the island of Crete, in Greece.
Winemaker: Nikos Douloufakis
Gaia wines was launched in 1994 by agronomist Leon Karatsalos and oenologist Yiannis Paraskevopoulos with the release of their first wine:Thalassitis. A modern and racy expression of Santorini Assyrtiko that took the world by surprise. To this day they are still ranked in the top echelon of producers on Santorini.
This is no doubt due to their tireless quest for knowledge and understanding.
In 1996 Gaia acquired their own vineyards and built a brand new winery in Koutsi, Nemea. Here they specialise in Agiorgitiko, the noble but generous red variety of Nemea.
Winemaker: Yiannis Paraskevopoulos
Since 1840, the Dalamaras family has been involved in wine making and distillation. The spirit and tradition of a proud heritage have been passed down to the fifth generation of Dalamara family who show the same dedication to the values that governed the founder.
Close to the town of Naoussa, tucked up in the north corner of Central Macedonia, the vineyards of Dalamara are located on the eastern foot hills of Mount Vermion in a traditional vineyard area called Paliokalias at an altitude of 250-300 m. The climate of this area features warm dry summers and mild winters – perfect conditions for one of Greece’s most important red varieties, Xinomavro. The Winery has been certified by BioHellas since 1996.
Winemaker: Kostis Dalamara
Cephalonia, Ionian Islands, Greece
In 1964 Spiro-Nicholas Kosmetatos planted his first of various indigenous class white varieties on the island of Cephalonia. Some years later in 1984, the first commercial wines from Gentilini were released, and at the time, Spiro was regarded as a pioneer in fine wine making techniques within Greece and paved the way for current winemaker and owner, Petros Markantonatos who took over with his partner, Marianna (Spiro’s daughter) in 2002.
Cephalonia is the only Ionian island to have been granted ‘ appellation of origin and Gentilini is organically growing 3 of these varieties – Robola, Muscat and Mavrodaphne.
Winemaker: Petros Markantonatos
The winery was founded in 1996 by Haridimos and Konstantina Hatzidakis. Konstantina’s family has owned vineyards in the village of Pyros Kallistis (at the southwest end of the island), but due to an earthquake that rocked Santorini to its core in 1956, his parents fled back to Athens.
The land was left uncultivated for 40 years until Haridimos made his way back to the island, and after extensive re-planting and nurturing of older vines, and discovering a cave which has now been converted into their cellar door, the winery is once again operational producing wonderful expressive whites.
Winemaker: Haridimos Hatzidakis
Ktima Gerovassiliou is the brainchild of Vangelis Gerovassiliou. In 1981, he started reviving the family vineyard extending over 2.5 hectares in the Papamola region of Epanomi, approximately 25 km southeast of Thessaloniki. In this unique ecosystem he planted mainly Greek, but also foreign grape varieties. The first vinification took place in 1986 at the modern winery that was built by the vineyard. The vineyard is surrounded on three sides by the sea, which is three kilometres distant, while its west side faces Thermaic Gulf and Mount Olympus, and the beaches of Pieria.
The climate in the region of Epanomi is Mediterranean with mild winters and hot summers, tempered by sea breezes.
The Epanomi region has been continuously inhabited for nearly 6,000 years. Wine-making is attested here for around 1,500 years. In Byzantine times, Era Epanomi was referred to as being a well-known vine-growing region. However, a settlement named “Panomi” was first recorded
in a census carried out in 1302.
Epanomi is an area of major ecological importance. A uniquely beautiful wetlands
of 550 hectares is located in the Fanari area, which hosts rare species of flora and fauna and serves as a haven of migratory and other birds. The Epanomi wetlands has been included in the European Union’s program “Natura 2000”.
Winemaker: Evangelos Gerovassiliou
The Tselepos family is one of the eminent producers and exporters of Greek wine turning some of the most popular indigenous Greek grape varieties into deliciously aromatic wines enjoyed worldwide.
It took Giannis Tselepos 10 years to carefully observe and study Arcadian vineyards so as to select the perfect location for the establishment of his Estate, which was founded at the eastern foothills of Mt Parnon; an ideal location due to its poor, clay-rocky terrain with excellent drainage guaranteeing high quality wine from Greece.
Tselepos Estate is a small family business with vineyards planted on the foothills of Mt. Parnon, 14km from the town of Tripolis near the ancient city of Tegea, in the heart of Arcadia. The Estate’s vineyards are situated above 750 metres in a region that was originally selected because of its perfect terroir: clay-rocky soil and cool-climate viticultural conditions which they consider essential for the production of fine wines in Greece’s hot, Mediterranean climate.
Winemaker: Giannis Tselepos
Aegean Islands, Greece
The Samos Cooperative has the honor of presiding over Greece’s best known and most highly regarded appellation. One of Greece’s original cooperatives, the Samos takes very seriously its role as guardian of the Island’s famous Muscat tradition. Today the reputation of its wines firmly restored to the glory they knew during the era of Phylloxera in France in the nineteenth century.
Apostolos Thymiopoulos is without a doubt the rising star of Naoussa. His vines, cultivated according to biodynamic methods at an altitude of 180m in the southern sector of the appellation, are blessed with a goodly amount of sunshine. The terrain is comprised of Naoussa’s most geologically complex soils, made of lime-rich marlstone, schist and granite. Thymiopoulos focuses on expressing the freshness of the grapes and giving each vintage a unique signature. He shuns filtering and extraction and his wines are aged in vats and barrels the old-fashioned way.
Winemaker: Apostolos Thymiopoulos
Mantineia, Peloponnese, Greece
The Troupis Winery is located in the heart of the Mantineia wineyards, in the area known as Fteri, at an altitude of 700m. Ioannis Troupis’ family has been involved in the wine industry since the mid-1970s when they cultivated vines primarily for trading their products but also for making wine from some of the grapes to meet the family’s needs.
Winemaker: Ioannis Troupis
The Mercouri Estate is located in the Western Peloponnese on the plateau of the Ichthis peninsula near the village of Korakochori (the place of the crow). The estate is extensive with over 150 years of history in the production of wine, olive oil and in the olden days, Corinthian grapes (or currants).
It belongs to the Mercouri family who have roots in the Peloponnese and all over the continent; a family with a variety of interests, but a particular love of the earth. Today the company, Mercouri Estate is operated by brothers Vassilis and Christos Kanellakopoulos, the 4th generation of the family focusing on indigenous grape varieties.
Winemaker: Vassilis Kannellakopoulos