Yesterday I was raving about a Greek wine, but it happened to be one that had limited production and may be difficult for many readers to find. Here’s another red from the same producer that should be a little easier to find, although Greek wines in general don’t get a lot of shelf space in many US wine shops. Based on what I’ve been tasting, that’s a shame.
The Tsantali KANENAS red is a blend of 50% mavroudi and 50% syrah. I expect you’re familiar with syrah, but mavroudi may be a new grape to you. It’s a Greek variety, known for intense aromas and heavy tannins. As I’ve mentioned with other unique varieties in the past, here’s one for your Wine Century list.
The vineyards where the grapes for this wine reside are within the Ismarikos (or Ismaros) Protected Geographical Indication (PGI — Greece’s appellation system). This is in the Maroneia region in Thrace, which is in northeastern Greece, along the Aegean Sea.
That’s a lot to grasp if you’re new to Greek wines and geography, but that’s one of the fun things about wine for me. When I taste a new wine I love to look up the region where it’s produced on a map, look at pictures of the region and get a sense of place. Of course I’m a firm believer that you can never really understand a wine region without visiting it. And I think this would be a nice place to visit. I’ll add it to my list!
OK, my wine-geekiness is coming out now. I know that what you really care about is whether the wine is good or not.
This wine has a spicy nose, showing aromas like nutmeg, black pepper, plum and chocolate. The palate has bright acidity and moderately dense tannins, in other words it has good structure. In terms of flavors, it offers bright raspberry, cherry and plum, balanced with some earthy and spicy flavors. The fruit has good flavor and is plenty dry, so this isn’t a jammy wine at all. It finishes with a kick of spicy black pepper. This is a nice wine, with good complexity and character. And it makes me want to keep exploring Greek wines.
Wine: Tsantali Kanenas Red
Variety: 50% mavroudi and 50% syrah
Disclosure: This wine was received as a media sample.
Find Tsantali Kanenas Red with Snooth