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K&L Staff Recommendations
A combination of Assyrtiko, with its inherent layers of structure and power, combined with the small addition of the bright lift and aromatics of the Athiri is really a knockout. A very bright aromatic of rich citrus and that one of a kind volcanic minerality, which can only be found on Santorini, gives this wine a refreshing character from start to finish. Plenty of juiciness on the palate with expressive length and a happy finish that has verve and identity. This has a certain restrain that can only come from a true master of their craft. Drink nice an... Read More »
90 points Wine & Spirits: "Hatzidakis has his own style, one that combines richness and rusticity in a beguiling way. This 2013 is so ripe it’s golden, with roundness to its lemony fruit and a slight floral note that’s unusual for Santorini. Then the minerality comes on, dark and earthy in its deep savor. It has the structure to age well for another decade." (8/2014) Jancis Robinson: "A blend of Assyrtiko, Aidani and Athiri. Both complex and fragrant from the mix of varieties. Cool creamy lemon and a more stony, dusty character in tandem. Intense, intensely dry, finest of chalky grips on the texture. ...Read More »
From the importer: "A certified organically farmed vineyard on the island of Santorini, Sigalas is producing some of the most sought after white wines in Greece. These intensely aromatic whites, based on the indigenous Asirtiko grape, are grown in the volcanic soils of Santorini, consisting of cinders, rust, lava and pumice stone. These wines have excellent structure, good acidity and a long, full flavored finish. With a unique growing method, whereby the vines are trained into a cylindrical shape, the fruit ripens gently within the basket to protect it ... Read More »
92 points Wine & Spirits: "“Like lemon fireworks,” one taster commented, capturing the dynamic feel of this assyrtiko. It’s classic Gaia Santorini style: as sharp as a razor and as bright as the blinding island sun. The flavors are entirely savory, focused on volcanic stone, driven by that citrusy acidity into every cranny of the mouth. Decant it before serving with grilled sardines." (10/2015) Jancis Robinson: "Racy and correct with fine lime fruit and quite chewy on the finish." (10/2015) K&L Notes: Assyrtiko is perhaps the only Mediterranean grape to flourish under the difficult climatic conditions found in th... Read More »
90 points Wine Spectator: "Supple and savory, with sanguine, cherry and dried berry flavors that are richly spiced. The long finish is pure and refreshing, showing some dried citrus accents." (11/2014) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2008 Naoussa is, of course, Xinomavro, aged one year in French oak (60% new, 40% used). It comes in at 13% alcohol. Classic, straight-ahead, old-fashioned Xinomavro, this is bright, tight and earthy, succeeding with its structure and character, but not always showing a lot of concentration. That last part tends to hold it back a bit and gives it a ceiling. I have come to enjoy it ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
Yiannis Argyros is a winelover who works very hard to obtain high quality grapes in order to make superior quality wines. And there are many professionals in the Greek wine market who think of Yiannis Argyros as the best Greek winemaker in dry white wines and dessert wines. His efforts to produce high quality wines have been worldwide acknowledged, as indicates the award by the Wine & Spirits Magazine as one of 100 best wineries in the world for 2005 and 2006. The Atlantis white is a crystal-clear yellow color, with a distinctive flavor with citrus overt... Read More »
100% Limniona. Not only one of my top Greek rosé picks, also one of my top rosé bottlings in general. Bright cranberry and other red fruits with spice and subtle mineral cut on the mid-palate. Has a juicy core of fruit which is bright and refreshing on the palate. (Eric Story, Greek Buyer)
90 points Wine & Spirits: "The scent is pure pine forest, cool and refreshing; the flavor is pure, fresh fruit—pears and cold green grapes—the pine notes floating over them as if carried on a breeze. It will keep you cool all summer long, on its own or with a mezes spread." (8/2007) K&L Notes: This is a modern interpretation of Retsina. Made from the Roditis base wine that is used in Notios White, a small amount of pine resin is allowed to pass through the wine to give it that familiar, yet subtle resinated character. A clean and refreshing zip of mint and eucalyptus explode from the glass whi... Read More »
Jancis Robinson: "Xinomavro is such an interesting variety – red fruits, sometimes with an orangey character. Juicy, tangy and fresh, the tannins here are definite but not yet fully established. A lovely mouthful of fruit in a perfectly suited structure." (11/2014) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Xinomavro Young Vines comes in at 13% alcohol. It is completely unoaked this year, not that it ever had much, and the purity shows in the wine's pulpy, slightly sweet, unadorned fruitiness. Specifically made to drink on the younger side as a fresh wine, this typically benefits as well from its nice struc ...Read More »
A blend of Roditis and Moschofilero grown in the Peloponnese from Skouras, one of Greece's best producers. Floral and herbaceous on the nose, this tangy white fills the palate with flavors of citrus blossom and jasmine, with a minty-mineral accent. Long, and so delicious with grilled seafood, dolmas or while snacking on olives. And such a value!
92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Ramnista is an old vines Xinomavro sourced from selected vineyard blocks within the Yianakohori vineyard. It won't make lovers of the fruity, sweet and simple very happy, but if you like old school Barbaresco, this somewhat aggressive red is for you. It is well priced for the quality, too, and one of my favorite Ramnistas to this point--although it is young and requires some patience despite the late release. It was aged in a mixture of French and American oak (25% new in a mixture of 225-liter and 500-liter casks) for 18 months, a bit longer th ...Read More »
Wine & Spirits: "The sweet cherry flavors of agiorgitiko get a floral lift from 30 percent moschofilero. Candied and bright, all it needs is a chill and a beach to show its best." (8/2013) K&L Notes: The Skouras Red is made from 90% Aghiorghitiko and 10% Cab all fermented in stainless steel. The combination is wonderfully fresh, with sprightly aromas and flavors of violets, plums, savory herbs, anise, and cherries. Medium-bodied, with bright acidity and balanced, supple tannins.
93 points Wine & Spirits: "As is typical for Thalassitis, this is long, lean and tightly wound, needing air to get past the initial green onion notes of reduction. Then it begins to build, slightly herbal and cucumber-crisp, a leesy richness bringing fatness to all the minerality. The wine lasts, one of the most austere of the vintage, wanting another few years in bottle to come into its own." (8/2014) 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Thalassitis is the winery’s flagship, unoaked and sourced from ungrafted, old vines (70-80 years) Assyrtiko (without malolactic fermentation since, says the winery, it has no ...Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2012 Agiorgitiko Classic, the current release, was aged for 8 months in 40% new (the rest second use) oak (French, 70%; American for the rest). Rather unevolved at the moment, this seems more concentrated if less expressive than its 2011 sibling (revisited this issue), perhaps a function of youth. Like its sibling, though, it is beautifully constructed, solid and slightly crisp on the finish, showing good fruit flavor and that Burgundian demeanor. This is tightly wound, however, just now. It finishes fresh, with hints of steel and moderate tannins. T ...Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Muscat Vin Doux comes in with 207 grams per liter of residual sugar and 15% alcohol. It is unoaked. At the price (for a 375ml bottle), this is simply a steal most years. Fresh, sweet and pure, it manages to seem very friendly despite some pretty scary statistics. Laced with peach, apricot and a touch of mint, this is delicious but lively, with a lingering finish. All those Muscat aromas and flavors survive the sugar and come to the fore beautifully. At the quoted price, dessert-wine lovers should be running to find it. Note, though, that it is e ...Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Estate White is a 50/50 blend of Malagousia and Assyrtiko. This blend has been coming along quite nicely of late. It is usually a good QPR point in the lineup. It comes in at 13.5% alcohol. Fresh and aromatic, it has just a bit of tension on the finish, beautiful fragrance and tasty fruit. The Assyrtiko (probably) gives it a feeling of solidity as well, even though it is an un-oaked wine in that fresh, vibrant style. Drink it young and fresh, even though it should hold nicely for a few years. If you like that un-oaked, summer style, this is a ni ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Axia, the typical 50-50 Syrah and Xinomavro blend, was aged for 12 months in second-use French oak, medium to light toast. It comes in at 14.5% alcohol. This can sometimes be a bit closed in its youth, but I gave it a little extra rest this year and was rewarded with another performance that makes this one of the best red values in Greek wine. Pointed and powerful, with a crisp finish, it doesn't always seem deep, but it never fades or thins, either, and by Day 2 it seemed far better. It filled the mouth with fruit fairly respectably. Laced with ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
About Lantzanakis: "The Lantzanakis family has been growing organic extra virgin olive oil since 1995 on their estate in Sitia, Crete. The olive trees, from which this oil is produced, are family property over generations. The family estate is located in the region of the mountainous village Krya. The olives are organically and biodynamicly cultivated with natural and traditional methods under the control of DIO (Certification & Inspection Organisation of Organic Products). The olives are collected by hand and mechanical means and immediately cold presse... Read More »
Jancis Robinson: "Single vineyard block that best expresses the cool terroir and free-draining sandy soils at 690 metres. 12 months in French oak. TA 5.7 g/l, pH 3.4. Mid cherry red with pale rim. Peppery red-fruit aroma, really fragrant, and wonderful freshness on the palate. Subtle but present tannins now finely integrated with the fruit. Surprisingly delicate and very persistent, lovely pure fruit, impeccably handled in the winery for a refined but highly drinkable wine with a distinctive character. (JH) 17.5/20 points. Drink 2014-2019." (1/2014) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2010 Xinomavro Hedge ...Read More »
80% Agiorgitiko (St. George), 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. The color is very deep and intense purple. In the nose it is dense, concentrated and complicated. Shows nice and elegant. Aromas of ripe fruit such as blackberries and raspberries are coupled with a spicy characteristic, smoke and a touch of leather that all fill the nose. In the mouth it is silky but powerful, framed by delicate tannins and gentle acidity and offering flavors of ripe fruits, cloves, black pepper and just a touch of herbs.The aftertaste has extended length and a great complexity. Ferm... Read More »
100% Liatiko, from the Greek island of Crete. This native Cretan varietal reveals spicy red fruit aromas and flavors, with a mouth-filling, medium body, and soft tannins, with some added complexity and richness from new oak aging. Polished and elegant, this pairs well with red meats and cheeses.
100% estate, from the Gofas family's vineyards in the prestigious Koutsi region of Nemea, where elevation, mesoclimate, and loamy clay soils create ideal conditions for growing grapes with ripeness, structure, and natural acidity. Farmed and vinified according to traditional methods, this is a versatile dry red composed of 50% Agiortiko and 50% Syrah. Bold and spicy, with great depth of flavor and persistence on the finish, it's a no-brainer for Greek and Mediterranean cuisine!
This unique blend of 80% Liatiko and 20% Mandilaria is made entirely of estate fruit from ungrafted 80-90 year old vines. The vineyard has marl, limestone, sand, and schist soils and sits at an altitude of 700 meters. Maceration takes place over 6-8 days followed by spontaneous native yeast fermentation in stainless steel. Elevage is in 350 liter Burgundian oak for 36 months.
Jancis Robinson: "This grape variety needs elevation because it’s naturally a little low in acidity. This vineyard is at 500 m or so, vines 20-25 years old. 12 months in old French oak. Sweet and nicely resolved aromatically. Some sweetness and fairly soft. Elderberry with some spice. Super clean and lively. (JR)" (10/2015) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2012 Saint George (that is, Agiorgitiko) is a pretty reliable bargain here and this might be one of the best vintages for it. Aged in second-use French oak for 12 months, it comes in at 13.7% alcohol. Light and bright, it is vibrant, elegant and arom ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
91 points Wine & Spirits: "Peach blossom scents nod toward the Malagousia in this blend, while Assyrtiko provides the drive, a bracing mineral tension that propels the lime-scented fruit forward. It feels firm but filigreed, delicate enough to treat a fillet of sole with respect." (8/2015) K&L Notes: If it weren't for the conservation efforts of Vangelis Gerovassiliou, along with a handful of concerned Greek vitculturalists, the endangered ancient Greek Malagousia vine would surely have gone extinct and we'd never get to enjoy its lovely mango-scented aromas, silky mouthfeel, and delicate eleg... Read More »
According to the winery: "Since 1840, the Dalamaras family has been involved in wine making and distillation. The spirit and tradition of a proud heritage have been passed down to the fifth generation, of Dalamara family who show the same dedication to the values that governed the founder. The vineyards Dalamara are located on the eastern foot hills of mount Vermion in a traditional vineyard area called Paliokalias at an altitude of 250-300 m. The climate of this area features warm with dry summers and mild winters. For most of the day are exposed to the... Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Assyrtiko, the regular, screwcapped mid-level bottling, comes in at 13.5% alcohol. It is unoaked and sourced from 70-year-old vines. Showing beautifully in its youth, it does what it usually does of late: be fresh, pure and clean, with good depth for its status and tension on the finish. This has become a solid and very focused bottling on a consistent basis, often showing more of that steel and minerality than the upper-level bottlings, although most certainly not their longevity or power. This projects that transparent, tank-aged purity that m ...Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Robola is dry and unoaked and comes in at just 12.5% alcohol. This seems tightly wound, yet still elegant. It projects very reasonable mid-palate concentration. That's surprising because owner Petros Markantonatos said that the vintage was "generally a challenging one with yields down about 40%. The Robola grapes for the Gentilini Robola 2014 were harvested about a week later, at 12.5% alcohol instead of 13-13.5% that we usually aim for, and the juice from different altitudes were vinified separately to give us more freedom in blending." It seem ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
Producer noted: "70% Agiorgitiko, 30% Moscofilero. Bright with medium deep cherry-red with pink hues. Vibrant aromas of ripe cherries and raspberries with hints of sweet spices and floral, rose petal notes. Medium body with moderate high acidity and the slightest hint of very ripe tannins. Flavors are consistent with the aromas with some shades of sweet grass and bubble gum. The finish is moderately long with evolving flavors that add complexity. Skin contact for 24-48 hours at 18ºC for Agiorgitiko, 6 hours at 16ºC for Moscofilero. Blend and alcoholic fe... Read More »
Nikteri is a more traditional style of making Assyrtiko wine in Santorini, using barrel fermentation and aging. The wine's time in barrel contributes to a layered, decadent complexity, which provides a beautiful counterbalance to the natural saline and citrus notes of the grape. Serve this with a plate of grilled Halumi cheese and it'll sing sweet "opas" in your ear.
90 points Wine & Spirits: "Perhaps it’s Christos Zafeirakis’s time spent studying in Piedmont, or maybe it’s just the nature of limniona, a local variety that was nearly extinct before he started at his family’s winery ten years ago, but this has a distinctly Italianate feel. It’s there in the spice that weaves through the soft, sour cherry fruit, and in the tang of grape skins; it comes up in waves of earth, a forest-floor detail that adds a dark tone without weighing down the wine’s airy feel. The volatile acidity and saline minerality give it extra brightness, prompting one pan ...Read More »
The Tagaras olives are harvested completely by hand with wooden ladders propped carefully in the trees so as not to damage tender branches. The olives are combed off of the branches and onto canvas sheets placed under the trees. At the same time, some gentle grooming and pruning of the trees is done in preparation for the next season. The olives are carefully picked through and sorted to remove any that are damaged or bruised while still on the canvas sheets and then placed into burlap bags for transfer by tractor to the olive press within hours of being... Read More »
92 points Wine & Spirits: "The longer this golden wine sits in the glass, the more detail comes forward. Grown at a patch of old vines in the lower altitudes of Patras, just east of the port, it’s redolent of orange blossoms and bergamot tea, with a seductive smoky note and lemon lift. Vibrant despite its concentration, the flavors last on a long, silky texture. To drink--and marvel at--all on its own, or with goat cheese." (8/2014) 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2008 Muscat de Rio Patras was made from grapes sun-dried for 10 days. It is un-oaked and listed at just 12% alcohol. This is always a luscious and d ...Read More »
Vinsanto is the most genuine descendant of the "passon oinon," as were called the sun-dried wines in antiquity. During medieval times, the ancient, volcanic island of Thira was renamed Santo Erini—Santorini, and the wine took the name Vino Santo—Vinsanto, declaring its origin, by the Venetians. Thus, the name Vinsanto is a "historical name of appellation," one of the few examples still existing.
Special Order Only!!! Special order items are not in stock and are dependent upon quantity available from distribution. All special orders are final and non-refundable. Please allow 5-7 business days for product to be available for shipping. Metaxa 7 Star is a Greek spirit often confused for brandy, but is actually a unique drink produced from Savatiano, Sultanina and Black Corinth, twice distilled, blended with aged muscat and a secret mix of botanicals. The 7 is then aged for at least seven years in limousine oak casks. A Best Buy, Wine Enthusiast: "N... Read More »
Inventory: Special Order
Special Order Only! Special order items are not in stock and are dependent upon quantity available from distribution. All special orders are final and non-refundable. Will take 3-7 business days to receive this product before it can be shipped. "Very Good, Recommended," by the Wine Enthusiast: "The bouquet comes off very mature, brandy-like, raisiny and pruny with a genuine wood influence and vanilla-like sweetness that rounds out the raisiin/prune aspect. Palate entry is truly raisiny/pruny and more bittersweet than sugar sweet; midpalate stage featue ... Read More »
Inventory: Special Order
100% Assyrtiko, estate fruit from ungrafted 70-100 year old vines. Yields of 25hl/ha on volcanic ash soils. Fermented using inoculated neutral yeast in stainless steel. The name of the winery, though a little long and difficult to pronounce, actually has an interesting back story. In Greek, Koutsos is someone who limps, Yianni is a first name (John), and Opoulos is a suffix that means "child of," much like Mc or O' are used in Ireland but as prefixes. So, some member of the Koutsoyannopoulos clan in the distant past, a guy named, you guessed it "Yianni,"... Read More »
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Liatiko Dafnios is all Liatiko, a red grape indigenous to Crete and sourced from vines approximately 30 years old. It was aged for nine months in a mixture of used French oak (80%) and stainless steel (20%). Fresh and pure, this features, sappy, up-front fruit flavor with a nod to Beaujolais, but it also adds a fresh and vibrant feel with mild tannins, some persistence on the finish and a bright personality. It is a lovely red that can and should be chilled down a bit (around 60F works well) and drunk as an uncomplicated sipper. In the short-run ...Read More »
This aromatic Greek white is made from the Moschofilero grape, a variety known for its exuberant floral perfume and lively acidity, making it a natural pair to Mediterranean cuisine!
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2012 Yianakohori Hills is a blend of Xinomavro (50%), Merlot (30%) and Syrah (20%) aged for 14 months in well used, French 225-liter and 500-liter barrels. Lovely this year, this is fresh and flavorful up front, with power on the finish. Bright and chock full of flavor, this is superb, showing reasonable concentration and the structure to support the fine fruit. It is immensely appealing at the moment. It will be approachable young, but it will be better next year and it should drink well for the better part of a decade thereafter, or more. How long ...Read More »
91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2010 Muscat de Rio Patras is sun-dried Muscat à Petits Grains, unoaked and coming in at 13.5% alcohol. Gorgeously aromatic, this is thick and viscous with apricots and pears on the finish. Luscious and delicious as always, this is a bottling that sometimes lacks some balancing acidity. This year won't remind anyone of a wine with verve, but it drinks well and holds its own. It should age for the next decade or so. I must add, though, that the winemaker thinks drinking it by 2020 or so would be safer. I tend to believe it will do better, but with that ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
100% Xinomavro. Established 20-plus years ago by Konstantinos Karydas and now run by his son, Petros, this small six acre estate is absolutely stunning. The philosophy is simple yet painstaking: grow nothing but the absolute best fruit nature can allow and then have a minimalist winemaking style. The vineyard is a sandy, clay hillside while the winery thoughtfully sits right in the middle. Fantastic spicy fruit with mid-weight texture and power with integrated but firm tannins. If you're a fan of Northern Italian Nebbiolo you should definitely try this a... Read More »
The Skouras Red is made from 90% Aghiorghitiko and 10% Cab all fermented in stainless steel. The combination is wonderfully fresh, with sprightly aromas and flavors of violets, plums, savory herbs, anise, and cherries. Medium-bodied, with bright acidity and balanced, supple tannins.
Inventory: Redwood City