Assyrtiko ‘Wild Ferment’, Santorini, Gaia Wines
The Assyrtiko (pronounced Ah-SEER-tee-koe) grape is a local variety found in Santorini, Greece. They’ve been growing grapes for wine there for over 3,000 years. So, why haven’t we heard much about Greek wine? Well, they tend to keep most of it for themselves! We have some gorgeous citrus, apple, pear and toasty notes here, not unlike some lovely white burgundy.
Terry Kandylis of Decanter writes “A whiff of white nectarine with a gunflint minerality and hint of spice. Lemony freshness, grapefruit and hints of wild flowers. Bone dry, with more peach and white plum characters on the palate and a softness on the acidity. Fresh and moderately aromatic; a pleasing alternative to a grand cru Chablis. 93 POINTS”
Food Pairing – works really well with seafood, especially meatier fish like tuna. Also great with roast chicken or turkey, try and serve it with bread sauce for a great pairing.
What does ‘Wild Ferment’ mean?
Well, most wines are fermented with yeast bought from specialist suppliers. They use these cultured yeasts because they are much more predictable when fermenting than wild yeasts. Wild yeasts are present in the atmosphere of the winery and the fermentation of the juice occurs naturally. Wild yeasts, while unpredictable, give a much more intense and complex flavour to the wine. So when you a winemaker uses wild yeasts they’re taking a risk but Gaia really know what they’re doing and they’ve made a delicious wine and the gamble has definitely paid off!