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2017 Sigalas Assyrtiko Santorini Greece

SKU #1353680 95 points Wine & Spirits

Outer quote mark This assyrtiko may not be as powerful as Sigalas’s single-vineyard bottlings, but the 2017 excels in the simple joy and purity it transmits. It’s a liquid landscape of Santorini, from the clean, salty scent of a white-sand beach to the blinding brightness of the white limed buildings, telegraphed here in sunny, pithy lemon flavors. It feels minimalist and yet dynamic, thirst-quenching and vital. Inner quote mark (8/2018)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Outer quote mark The 2017 Santorini Assyrtiko, the flagship 100% Assyrtiko (which I have often called in the past either Assyrtiko or Santorini, as both fit) is unoaked and comes in at 14.5% alcohol. Maybe it was just due to my tasting this next to some of the brilliant 2016s this issue, but this seemed rather understated by comparison and a bit off of its normal brilliance. Then, I went back and did what I find is important to do when tasting quality young Assyrtiko--taste it again the next day. Sometimes, you might need two days. Or three. Decanting helps, too--a simple taste is not always revealing. If I was somewhat unimpressed with this originally, on the second day it was suddenly interesting, even exciting. "Understated" is the last word to use. It exploded in the glass. Showing fine freshness despite its size, it is simply gripping on the finish, filled with energy and very tense. It is also very concentrated. The wine doesn't seem thick exactly, but it is actually a little unctuous as it sits on the palate, showing how ripe and rich the fruit is. It fills the mouth. For all that, it seems to keep its balance. As good as this is, it left me wondering where it goes and how it will develop. Will it stay in balance? Become more expressive? With another three years in the cellar, it might show a lot like the 2016 Imerovigli Village this issue or maybe the Megalochori Village, but let's be a little conservative right now. I still have a couple of questions it has not answered. (MS) Inner quote mark (6/2018)

K&L Notes

Domaine Sigalas is a wine producer founded in 1991 on the Greek island of Santorini. It is best known for its white wines made from the Assyrtiko grape variety, particularly the crisp, citrussy stainless steel-fermented version. 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 from the strong ocean winds. High humidity at night allows for just enough moisture intake for the grapes to develop and the soil structure and lack of nutrients ensure distinct minerality in the wines."

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Product Reviews:

By: Stefanie Juelsgaard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/10/2018 | Send Email
This vintage shows a little richer side of Assyrtiko with notes of orchard fruit and white flowers. A fun contrast to the Gaia Estate version, this rape shows a wide range of styles and flavors, all of which would make fantastic food pairing whites. I can't wait to explore this region and varietal more and have only been impressed by the offerings and flavor profiles so far.

By: Keith Mabry | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/9/2018 | Send Email
Sigalas is Santorini's benchmark producer. Paras Sigalas has created one of the island's most frequented wineries and its most sought after wine. The oily texture of Assyrtiko is striking when you first try it. Surrounded by notes of white flowers, roasted pears and dried lemon peel it is a long and inviting wine. There is no surprise that this has the structure to age. I visited Sigalas a few years ago where our group experienced a mini-vertical. Paras kept pulling out older bottles until we went back almost ten years. The sweet spot for me was about the three to five year range. The wines opened with creamier but very integrated palates and more pronounced fruit and smoky mineral notes. It was if the wines picked up more fruit along the way. Not saying that you should, but if you did age a few bottles, you would be in for a real treat. The Sigalas is one of the Mediterranean's most elite and interesting whites that needs to be experienced.

By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/9/2018 | Send Email
Sigalas has become synonymous with top quality on the island of Santorini, which itself has become synonymous with exciting, incredibly mineral, bracing, crisp and delicious white wine from Greece. This 2017 vintage initially feels riper and more forward than normal, but once you reach the mid-palate and consider the wine a bit more closely, all of the typical salty minerality and savory qualities are there, the youthful compactness, fruit and acidity all in admirable balance, though this will continue to improve for quite some time. Serious (and seriously delicious) stuff!

By: Jacques Moreira | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/4/2018 | Send Email
I thoroughly enjoy this rich, yet crisp, full-flavored expression of Assyrtiko. The beautiful notes of pineapple, dried apricots along with its saline/herbal notes, would make this wine an absolute delight to pair with of course -- Greek food, but also any Mediterranean-style dishes as well.

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