Categories
Making

The Bastion

It’s no secret that, for some years, Akakies has been The Pink for me – still or sparkling, my favourite Greek rose wine. But this year, at the urging of the same people who got me hooked on that Kyr-Yiannis staple, I tried La Tour Melas Idylle. Produced in Achinos, between Athens and Thessaloniki, on Kyros Melas’ estate, it’s paler, more elegant and more grown-up than Akakies. It is Bordeaux in style, with a Provençal air about it. On a Greek vacation spent in two towers and the shadows of a bastion, it seemed even more fitting to try this wine and picture it here – on a September evening as dusk fell.

Categories
Making

In The Pink: Akakies

In my less-than-humble-yet-often-voiced opinion, Greek wine has done nothing but improve in recent years. Greece is now in my top three of wine-producing nations, together with France and Italy. This is my personal view, by the way, I make no claim to be expert in anything beyond my own tastes. Most happily of all, Greece has provided me with some of my favourite, fun, pink wines. The name of today’s pink is Akakies.

The wine is produced in the Amyndeon Appelation in Northwestern Greece in an area with warm summers and cold winters, with an overall mild continental climate. It was inspired, apparently, by the acacias grown around the Xinomavro vineyards of Amyndeon. It has a scent of strawberry which would lead you to believe it to be sweet – not at all. Once tasted, the strawberry gives way to rhubarb or sour cherry (depending who you ask) and a very dry finish.

In short, it is a pretty pink for me. For the past few years, on coming back to Rhodes, I’ve been happy to readily and easily access a supply in town. Good news, people. For my patience and insistence, I’ve been treated to tastings of other pinks, but from Provence. Crisp, elegant, dry and just blushing in classiness, they may be. But it’s Akakies which makes me smile out loud – so it still has my heart.

in 2012, there was a hitch. The founder of Kυρ-Γιάννης ( Γιάννης Μπουτάρης) may well have been mayor of Thessaloniki, but (I was told) there were problems with the supply chain. The result was repeated visits to the local supplier (who got me hooked in the first place) and then, happiness, the discovery of two other local stockists (both of which sold Akakies cheaper, and one of which was only five minutes’ walk from my apartment). Cheers!

This was first published on axrhodes on 16/08/2013