Alpha Estate Xinomavro Reserve Old Vines 2012 750ml
SKU 786848

Alpha Estate Xinomavro Reserve Old Vines 2012

Alpha Estate - Amyndeon - Greece

Professional Wine Reviews for Alpha Estate Xinomavro Reserve Old Vines 2012

Rated 93 by Robert Parker
The 2012 Estate 'S.M.X.' is Syrah-dominated ('S') with 20% each of Merlot ('M') and Xinomavro ('X'), all sourced from high altitudes at 620-710 meters. It was aged for 12 months in new French oak and then held back in bottle for another year. This brand is trending up, but that is a fairly common comment regarding Alpha Estate's output. This is a fine follow up to the 2011. Opening a bit tart, this pulls itself together with aeration and becomes increasingly intense, yet better balanced. Silky in texture and elegant in the mid-palate, it becomes quite powerful and penetrating on the finish, which is laced with some blueberry nuances as well as some earthiness. There are promises of complexity to come. It becomes rather delicious on top of everything else. This somewhat astringent S.M.X. is impressively constructed, but it is in need of a little cellaring. If you can give it a couple of years of rest, at least, it will help a lot.

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Other Vintages: 2012 2010
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Additional Information on Alpha Estate Xinomavro Reserve Old Vines 2012

Winery: Alpha Estate

Vintage: 2012

2012 has, so far been a positive year for wineries around the world. While it may be a little too early to speak of the wines being made in the northern hemisphere, European and North American wineries have already begun reporting that their harvesting season has been generally very good, and are predicting to continue with the kind of successes they saw in 2011. However, 2012 has been something of a late year for France, due to unpredictable weather throughout the summer, and the grapes were ripening considerably later than they did in 2011 (which was, admittedly, an exceptionally early year). French wineries are claiming, though, that this could well turn out to be advantageous, as the slow ripening will allow the resulting wines to express more flavour and features of the terroir they are grown in. The southern hemisphere has seen ideal climatic conditions in most of the key wine producing countries, and Australia and New Zealand particularly had a superb year, in particular with the Bordeaux varietal grapes that grow there and which love the humidity these countries received plenty of. Also enjoying a fantastic year for weather were wineries across Argentina and Chile, with the Mendoza region claiming that 2012 will be one of their best vintages of the past decade. Similar claims are being made across the Chilean wine regions, where Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon had an especially good year. These two grape varietals also produced characterful wines on the coastal regions of South Africa this year.

Varietal: Xinomavro

In Macedonia and other parts of southern Europe, the main red wine grape varietal grown is the Xinomavro, a blue-black skinned grape whose name translates as 'acid black'. This grape thrives in the hot and arid landscapes of parts of Greece and the Mediterranean coast, and has been used for centuries for the production of superbly characterful dark red wines. The main features of the Xinomavro grape include their thick skins, which hold a high tannin content, and the fact that they contain a relatively high amount of acidity. These features are often problematic in young wines made from Xinomavro grapes, but also produce exquisite aged wines, when the tannins and acids have been given time to mellow and round out. In aged Xinomavro wines, a wide bouquet of delightful aromas is often present, containing classic Mediterranean notes such as black olive and dried tomato.

Country: Greece

Few countries in the world can claim such an illustrious history of viticulture as that found in Greece, just as few countries can benefit from such an impressive range of terrain as that found across the mainland and islands of this ancient and fascinating land. When we consider that grapes are grown everywhere from the tiny islands in the Aegean sea, to larger land masses such as Rhodes and Crete, on the arid and rocky mainland and mountainous regions of Greek Macedonia, it is no wonder Greek wines show such huge diversity in style, flavor, aroma and character. One thing remains consistent, however, and that is the dedication to producing distinctly 'Greek' wines, full of characteristics which reflect the slow evolution of viticulture in a country which has been producing wine for several thousand years. Whilst certain wines, such as Retsina and those made from the Agiorghitiko grapes have long since been popular with fine wine drinkers world-wide, Greek wineries are continuing to produce superb wines using a wide range of native and imported grape varietals, meaning there are always plenty of new flavors and aromas to discover.