2009 Vlahiko Grape from Ioannina Region - 538 Wine Notes

Domaine Glinavos

Lefteris Glinavos was part of the wave of boutique vintners that were instrumental in changing the entire face of Greek wine-making during the 1970s. At the turn of the 19th century Greek wine was dominated by large scale bulk-wine companies who purchased fruit from local growers without much care for quality. This state of affairs held steady until the late 60’s and into the 70’s a group of young wine-makers--whose own background in wine came from simple, village level production--started to travel abroad for their vinicultural education and return to Greece to begin projects that were what we understand today as “boutique wineries:” small scale operations whose whole purpose was to explore the furthest reaches of quality in their respective areas.

37 years later Domaine Glinavos is now under the supervision of Lefteris’ son, Thomas Glinavos. They own 20 hectares of vines in multiple plots sprinkled among the high perches of the appellation of Zitsa in Epirus. Domaine Glinavos is in a semi-mountainous region whose overall feel is more reminiscent of Austria or Switzerland than Mediterranean Greece. Limestone soils and mother-rock create finely delineated wines of bright acidity and lacy minerality. Cold winters and cooler summers produce wines that struggle to reach 12.5% ABV.

Varietals: 97% Vlahiko, 3% Bekari

Region: Epirus

Appellation: P.G.I. Ioannina

Vine Age: 15-20 years

Vineyard: The vineyards are located in Zitsa at an altitude of 700m. 

Soil: Limestone

Vinification: The grapes of the local red varieties Vlahiko & Bekari are destemmed and vinified in large wooden vats. The ageing is takes place in 3-5 year old French oak barrels for 18 months before bottling.

Production: 500 cases.

Tasting Notes: Initially, the wines aromas presents masculine qualities: worn leather, barnyard, cigar box, and graduates to pronounced red tart fruit aromas: sour cherries, and currents. Secondary notes of tangerine zest that bridges the leanness of this cool climate wine, to the gamy qualities of Vlahiko