2008 Boutari Assyrtiko, AOQS Santorini
I've read too much about Greek white wines, specifically assyrtiko, to not be moved to snatch this up. This is only the second Greek white wine I've seen this year released by the LCBO, the first being a delicious moschofilero, and from the same producer (drunk twice).
Santorini is a volcanic island, in the Aegean. Assyrtiko is the primary varietal grown on these volcanic soils, and what's most interesting is that they are mostly ungrafted. The vines crawl low over the island, and vineyards look nothing like the neatly plowed and trellised vineyards we're used to. The miracle of this variety is the acidity it can achieve - in such an unforgivingly hot climate, the wines have a balance that's quite remarkable.
Decanted. Light colour in the glass, but it does have gold flecks. The nose is wonderfully minerally, with a fresh citrus aroma. Eerily reminiscent of a Niagara riesling, with the somewhat musky, oily minerality. The mouth shows the richness of the volcanic soils - creamy and buttery almost, but with a refreshingly bitter, cleansing finish. Delicious.
I would drink this over any $30+ Californian chardonnay.DF