After three consecutive years of rather average quality, it looks like in 2011 Xinomavro came back to its very high standards. This year the weather helped the grapes to reach good levels of phenolic maturity with relatively low potential alcohol, which is one of the things that we try to achieve during the last years. After a rainy month of May, the long period that followed was dry but with no extreme temperatures. As a result, the grapes ripened well, while the absence of heat waves during summer resulted in grapes with very good levels of acidity, which, in their turn, gave wines with long aging potential.
It seems that 2011, just like 1994 and 2001, is one of those years that only come once in a decade!
The grapes are sourced from the viticultural zone of Agios Panteleimon within the Amyndeon appellation in Florina, Northwestern Greece. The high altitude (600m) and the poor sandy soils of the area lead to the production of wines displaying finesse and a rare aromatic character. The four surrounding lakes that act as a buffer zone create perfect weather conditions for the cultivation of Xinomavro, more temperate than expected in this continental climate. The grapes come from old vines, yielding no more than 6000 kg/ha. The selection of the vineyards was based on their soil, and the vines’ health and capacity to reach full maturity.
Kali Riza is produced from 100% Xinomavro grapes grown in the area of Amyndeon, in Northwestern Greece. The grapes are carefully selected on harvest depending on their age and content in sugars, phenols and acids. Upon delivery at the winery, they are chilled at a temperature of 8-10oC. After destemming, the grapes are crushed and left to cold soak for 6 days at 10oC, a process aiming at the extraction of more color and aromas. The alcoholic fermentation lasts 2 weeks and is followed by 1 week of post-fermentation maceration. After this period, the wine is transferred to the barrels, were it is left to mature for 14 months. During this time, the wine undergoes malolactic fermentation while it is gently stirred on its lees. Finally, the wine is bottled and left to mature for 1 additional year.