From crisp, zesty whites to powerful, savoury reds, there’s definitely more to Greek wine than retsina. We re-discovered this wine whilst doing a bit of research for our wine club’s upcoming Greek evening.
Whilst this wine from the island of Santorini has a definite peachy, sun-baked feel about it, it is well balanced with a refreshing citrus tang. This versatility lends itself well for autumnal drinking – either on a scarce sunny day in the garden or as something more substantial to enjoy with grain salads, for example. One thing to note though, we thought the touch of saline coming through from the wine’s excellent minerality was definitely not suited to the bowl of olives we unwittingly started with (Quinoa with Moutabal was much better) so avoid anything particularly salty!
Both the calibre of wine from Santorini and the local grape variety Assyrtiko are helping promote Greece’s wine making credentials which have come on in leaps and bounds in the last few years. The volcanic soils of Santorini can yield a wine of lovely minerality and acidic freshness. The sea fog in the evening provides welcome moisture for the grapes, which – when growing – are trained round in low ‘baskets’ for protection from the strong winds which are a double-edged sword as they also have a cooling effect on the hot, dry island.
At a glance
Style? Dry white wine
Where is it from? Santorini, Greece
What’s the grape? Assyrtiko
Tastes of? Grapefruits, peaches, minerals
What food would complement it? Grain salads, tomato based dishes work well with the high acidity.