Our November Wine of the Month is a multi-award-winning wine from northern Greece, recently scoring 93 points in Decanter magazine – Alpha Estate, Amyndeon, Reserve Vielles Vignes Single Block Barba Yannis, Xinomavro 2017. Made from 100% Xinomavro, on 01st November we celebrate #XinomavroDay. A day dedicated to this grape variety most commonly found in Greece to symbolise the typical end of harvest in Northern Greece and the start of the production of wines made from Xinomavro.
In a nutshell
This is a savoury red made from 90 year old vines with an enticing aroma of raspberries and sun dried tomatoes combined with liquorice and wild herbs, lovely flavour concentration and a dry finish.
Alpha Estate is located in Amyndeo, North West Greece. It is the brainchild of two visionaries, second generation vine grower Makis Mavridis and Bordeaux trained wine maker Angelos Iatrides. Angelos is one of the most talented winemakers working in Europe.
This pristine estate in the cool highlands of Western Macedonia comprises 120 hectares of privately owned single block vineyards and employs the most up to date vineyard techniques and winemaking technology to produce world class wines from French and indigenous Greek varietals.
The Xinomavro (pronounced Ksee no’ ma vro) grapes were destemmed, lightly crushed and cold soaked with skin contact. Fermentation took place using an indigenous yeast strain which has been isolated from the specific block. The grapes were vinified at gradually increasing temperatures, before being maintained “sur lie” or on its fine lees, for 18 months with regular stirring. Maturation took place in Allier-Jupille French oak casks of medium grain, for 24 months, with a minimum of a further 12 months ageing in the bottle prior to release. Bottled without fining and filtration.
The Single Block Barba Yannis is named in honour of Mr Yannis, from whom the single block of 3.71 hectares was purchased, in 1994. The estate vineyard is located in P.D.O. Amyndeon, in the region of Macedonia and is situated at an altitude of 620 to 710 metres above sea level.