The Assyrtiko of Santorini

Santorini is an island volcanic and explosive, full of charm, with history and tradition lost in the depths of the centuries and you can have a Santorini wine tour. It has lands that the volcano endowed with personality and extreme potential. On them comes to life Assyrtiko, the top white variety in Greece, but also one of the top in Europe – the only one that awkward foreign experts accept with enthusiasm.

Did you know that the duo Assyrtiko of Santorini and Sushi is starting to become a must on the stage of European restaurants? Did you know that more and more experts, worldwide, praise the Assyrian of Santorini and some classy publications place it as particularly trendy? This is not a joke. This is how things are now, and if the cube seems to have already been thrown, the road ahead of this unique grape is still very long. Because the wines of Santorini may have been dear to our country from a long time ago, but their high quality is a relatively recent case, while even newer (and therefore unstable) is the establishment in the international arena.

More than any other of the good white, Greek grape varieties, but also more than in any other viticultural region of Greece (with the possible exception of Nemea and Argiorgitiko), the duo “Assyrtiko and Santorini” seems to give flesh and bones in the Greek version of the image of the Mediterranean. But where the Agiorgitiko of Nemea seems to serve the Mediterranean in a warm, cordial and velvety way, the Assyrtiko of Santorini seduces with the expression of the “hard” Greek light and the strictness of the arid nature.

The setting is typical for the development of a purely Greek affair. An island at first, but a small and arid island. Santorini expresses its simple uniqueness in volcanic soil and emphasizes the hot peculiarity of the light of the Greek islands. And if the Greek light is dazzling and the charm of Santorini is harsh, the winds that constantly blow and almost stir up the whole island, make the Assyrian seduction a case full of mystery and questions. So up there, in this place with high temperatures and strong winds during the day, but with the rainfall sounding like a joke and the increased humidity at night, in the so raw and clear scenery of Santorini, the same impressive play is played for years with a protagonist: Assyrtiko.

The cultivation of this unique variety occupies 12,000 acres (85% of the cultivated land in Santorini), with yields that hardly reach 300-350 kg per acre. In other words, the yield is so low that it hardly catches half of the acreage yield of other wine-growing regions of Greece, but also a guarantee for wines with a strong personality and endless interest. Indeed, the interest in Santorini Assyrtiko and its wines is constantly growing and no one is yet able to predict where we will get and what we will see in the future. At present, Santorini together with Nemea are perhaps the most important viticultural areas of our country. The heart of Greek wine beats there today, as well as anywhere else. Without deviating from reality, we can say that these two zones are a precursor to the distance that Greek wine has to travel, how far it can go and in how much time.

The fact, however, is that within Greece, Assyrtiko of Santorini is already top in the recognition and preferences of the consumer public. Its sales have skyrocketed in recent years and the future looks bleak. And if we still accept that this increase is due to fashion and differentiated market trends, what does it matter? Do we not know that these trends would not exist if all the pioneers – and those who followed them – who achieved the spectacular improvement of Santorini wines and the formation of its current quality profile had not put their hand?

The future of the Assyrtiko of Santorini

It is not difficult to guess, we live in a very competitive era, where in the field of wine new and emerging forces are emerging from time to time, with products whose interest and quality often exceed all imagination. The secret to securing the future of Santorini Assyrtiko and its wines lies in the extensive and methodical work to ensure a number of conditions

It must improve its quality and there should be indentified with the global trend for organically grown vines and projection of this reality. Also, a demonstration of the uniqueness of the ecosystem of Santorini and its vineyard is necessary as well as an establishment of the Santorini vineyard as a protected monument, of special natural beauty.

A wine station, timeless and incredible, always of the highest level. Its color varies between brown and yellow, while its aroma always remains exuberant and intense. It mainly resembles fruits in jam, nuts, chocolate, raisins and dried figs. The aromatic complexity also passes into the exuberant taste, where in a peppery climate the elements of chocolate and honey dominate.

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