RKS 2023 Wine: A Greek Tragedy? The Blood of a Lion Killed by Hercules?

So little Greek wine flows into Canada and that in itself is a tragedy. The choice is almost no choice and if you are a fan of red wine we seem to have wholesale buyers enamoured with Xinomavro which if well made needs age to be enjoyable somewhat like Italian Barolo. Young Xinomavro is highly tannic. Best to age at least 5 years when it will be capable of showing its stuff.

Give me an Hellenic Pot Roast with Orzo any day!

How about wines made from the Agiorgitiko grape?

Nemea in the Greek Peloponnese is the source of much Agiorgitiko which means the grape of St. George (Agios Georgios) and originates from the city of Nemea, formerly called Agios Georgios-St George. There is an ancient legend that the rich, dark, soft and mysterious taste of some Agiorgitiko made wines are that way because the very vines on which the Agiorgitiko grow were stained by the lion that Hercules killed in the area. It is the only grape allowed to use the Nemea Appellation (PDO Nemea).

We now try a Cavino 2018 Nemea Reserva made with the Agiorgitiko grape. It has been aged 14 months in French oak barrels.

Aroma: Loads of black cherry with some beet, vanilla and milk chocolate. Not intense but rather easygoing.   

Palate: A bit of a tannic kick but far less than a comparatively aged Xinomavro. Tight fisted with the fruit so this definitely requires decanting.

Personality: There are many styles of Agiorgitiko and I am not a light one but I am really meant, as many of my Greek red wine friends, to be consumed with hearty fare. You would be wasting your palate and perhaps even demeaning my label by not consuming me with food. I warned you!

Cellarbility: The tannins perhaps are indicative of the need to age but the fruit is so tight fisted I do not think there is much room for evolution.

Food match: Hellenic pot roast without a doubt (kapama Elleniko giouvetsi).

Price: $18.95 (Ontario).

In a nutshell: Mundane and disappointing. Get me to Greece and show me the good stuff!

(Cavino Nemea Reserva 2018 PDO Nemea, 750 mL, 13%, Liquor Control Board of Ontario # 245787).

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food ,drink, travel, film, and lifestyle issues. He also has published serialized novels "Life at Megacorp", "Virus # 26, "Reggie the Egyptian Rescue Dog" and "The Penniless Pensioner" Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: