We owe a lot to the Greek civilization for wine as we know it today. In ancient Greece the culture of wine was embodied in Dionyssus who was one of the most worshiped of the Greek Gods inspiring artists, philosophers and the lives of everyday people. Maybe they were on to something. After all, when you enjoy wine with friends, don’t you find they become more creative and philosophical?
So why isn’t Greek wine more popular? There are more than 300 indigenous grapes found on these beautiful Mediterranean islands but with names like Assyrtiko, Moschofilero and Agiorghitiko most people give up. Don’t be intimidated; visit some of your local liquor stores to taste how great Greek wine can be!
Moschofilero produces wines filled with aromas of rose petals, violets, under-ripe peach and soft citrus. It typically has a light, dry finish. Visit Joe Canal’s in Egg Harbor Township to pick up a bottle of Boutari Moschofilero for just $12.99. While you’re there get a red too — Mitravelas Nemea ‘Red on Black’ is made from the Agiorghitiko grape. This is a red grape that gives aromas and flavors of juicy cherry, hints kalamata olives, dried bramble brush and purple potpourri with good grip and mouthwatering acidity. Sounds exotic, right? For only $9.99 this bottle is sure to please.
If you live further south visit the folks at Circle Liquor in Somers Point for Domaine Sigalas Assyrtiko from Santorini for $22.99. This grape makes a full-bodied white wine with aromas of Meyer lemon, pink grapefruit zest and Kafir lime with savory minerality. It’s considered by many to be the greatest white grape in Greece. It can also be blended with other white grapes and made into a heavenly sweet wine sold as Vinsanto.
Next time you visit us here at Borgata make sure that you stop by Vintage, A Wine Boutique in the Shoppes at The Water Club. We have Kir-Yianni Petra which is made from the Roditis grape. This lovely little white has aromas and flavors of warm peach, fresh apricot, white flowers and citrus zest. It is easy to drink and has acidity that will inspire you to enjoy some of your favorite dishes. If you’re in the mood for a red we have Domaine Skouras St. George Agiorghitiko. This medium-bodied wine has aromas and flavors of black cherries, fresh-picked blackberries and macerated strawberries with oak influences of baking spices and clove. The finish is long and elegant with fine tannins. This winery is at the forefront of helping put Greece back on the map for fine wines. You can pick up both of these wines for just $20, but if you’re not sure you’ll enjoy them you can taste them on the Enomatic wine serving machines. We offer a sip (1 ounce) for $2, a 3 ounce pour for $5 really lets you get into the wine and if you want to take a glass with you as you enjoy everything Borgata has to offer it’s only $8.
I hope you enjoy exploring the wines of Greece!