Great Greeks; Barrel Aged Assyrtiko from Domaine Sigalas


If you’re following Wine Virtuosity you know that Greek wines are in focus here. They deserve that. Santorini probably is the region least needing it, they already receive international attention, but too few consumers have realized just how good Assyrtiko can get. Here’s to the master himself, Paris Sigalas. Thanks for following!

Sometimes I should just settle with a “Oh boy, this is a great one!” and analyze the stuff first on the second day. The 2009 Barrel Aged Assyrtiko from Domaine Sigalas is such a wine. But, as a wine nerd, I do feel that half the pleasure comes with attention and besides, I need to tell the world! The non-oaked 2009 Assyrtiko is a real hit, but the 2009 barrel aged version is for me a step up in quality. It is actually the best I’ve tasted from Paris Sigalas so far, of the oaked Assyrtikos. 6 months aging in French oak. Furthermore also fermented in oak.

Assyrtiko from Sigalas ain’t just another white wine. It can be almost provocative in its style and I don’t think the mineral driven wines of Sigalas fits all palates. The 2009 Barrel Aged Assyrtiko shows scents of lemon peel, iodine, smoke, discretely integrated toasted oak, wet rocks and some yellow fruits. If you’re used to fruit bombs, this will shock you initially.

On the palate there’s this instant and quickly disappearing salty feel. Wet rocks en masse, smoke, lemon fruits, dried herbs, vanilla and an acidity level that calls for food pairing. Bone dry. All the components so well integrated. No disturbing elements whatsoever. Just a great glass and a long pure finish. But give it some further cellar time, a year or so, to allow the oak to fully integrate.

Should Assyrtiko be oaked at all one might ask. One could argue that it’s not exactly doing the wines a favor. For me, the answer is easy; it depends on the end result. In this case, it’s a great addition to the Sigalas portfolio and the wine rocks. Yes, we need Barrel aged Assyrtiko! Why not try the Barrel Aged version next to the un-oaked from Sigalas?

The Virtuoso says:



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More Santorini posts here.