This white grape was grown for centuries only on the island of Santorini, where the nutrient poor volcanic soil made the vines' rootstock impervious to the Phylloxera louse which devastated vineyards throughout Europe in the 19th Century. Every 100 years or so the grower chops off the vine's trunk allowing it to grow a new shoot. This has been completed several times over the centuries leading many to believe these are the oldest vines in the world! Additionally, the winds on Santorini are so strong that traditional vine training is not used. Growers have to coil the vine into a basket with the bunches of grapes hanging inside, protected from the wind. This is a unique grape variety. Assyrtiko yields a bone-dry, high acid wine that has citrus aromas mixed with an earthy, mineral aftertaste due to the volcanic soil of Santorini. It is one of the few white wines that can age and it is recommended to decant for an hour or so before serving.
This unique wine is produced on the island of Santorini. The vines are planted on a 15-degree slope facing East and Southeast on transferred pumice stone soil. The wine is made from the Assyrtiko grape and is light and aromatic. Only free run must is used, which is then fermented for approximately days at 15C. The resulting wine is almost white in color, bone-dry, with strong character, eliciting considerable structure, with crisp acidity, distinctive minerality and delicate honeysuckle aromas.
The grapes for the Monograph Assyrtiko come from vineyards located in the semi-mountainous Koutsi region of Nemea. Unlike the bone-dry, volcanic soils of its native Santorini, the calcareous soils of mainland Greece impart an entirely different character to the varietal, giving it a wider range of exotic fruit flavors and aromas. This is a youthful, intensely fruity Assyrtiko, with a bouquet of honeysuckle and citrus fruit and a refreshing acidity on the palate.
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