Assyrtiko is a favoured grape in the Morris and Bolton households. Grown on the volcanic island of Santorini, the grape vines are unusual in that they are trained into circular ‘nests’ to protect the grape bunches sitting inside. This is a recognition of the very exposed conditions of the vines. Images of these can be seen on the Internet.
Assyrtiko (pronounced a-SIRT-ik-O) di Mylos Vieilles Vignes 2014 is a powerful wine at 15% ABV. Served well chilled it did not give much away on the nose, apart from some richness and a smokey hint. The colour was pale lemon with no green present, suggesting low acidity. But, when sipped, the acidity hit was pronounced as was its strength. Only medium in length, to be honest this was a little disappointing, especially after it had been acclaimed by the wine press. My previous experiences with this wine showed that decanting was necessary and it could be termed a ‘second day’ wine – as the acidity levels drop and the fullness comes to the fore. Whilst the acidity was high it somehow lacked freshness and I wonder if its ABV level was in detracted from its finesse.
Okay, but not at the price. Good wine for strong flavoured food.
[Richard: any assrytiko we taste is always going to be compared to the wonderful Gaia Wild Ferment, previously reviewed here. This didn’t match up. Little complexity, despite the ‘old vines’ claim, not very long, too alcoholic, little varietal character. Not a bad wine – well made, good mouth feel, loads of acidity – but I’d have priced it at around £12, not twice that. In addition the WS website gave a lower ABV (now corrected) and showed the wrong photo. Further developments awaited.]