Notes de dégustation: couleur jaune verte. Nez de citron, de citron vert et de pomme verte. En bouche, c’est salin sur le zeste de citron et citron vert un peu fumé. Le vin possède à la fois de la minéralité mais aussi du fond. Un vin de classe internationale avec une histoire à raconter.
VIN : GAIA ASSYRTIKO WILD FERMENT 2016
The 2016 Assyrtiko Wild Ferment was aged in a 50/50 blend of stainless steel and barriques. That « barrique aging » part is particularly complicated, with some of the barrels being acacia, some being French oak, some being American oak, mostly new. It comes in at 13% alcohol. The wild ferment and complicated vinification make this pricier than most Santorinis, but it is typically worth the effort. This year is a fairly typical one, the wine showing some caramel and wood that obscures the purity of the fruit far too much on opening and gives it a creamy, sweet (from wood) edge. It seems lush and caressing in mouthfeel, though. As it sits and warms, its freshness comes to the fore. The woody nuances should dissipate a bit over the next several months and allow it to show increasingly well. I’ve learned the hard way (sometimes painfully) with this bottling, that when just released and just opened, it often is not in good balance, the wood obscuring the fruit too much and making it seem relatively poor. I kept it open (recorked, refrigerated) for about four more hours and suddenly it was drinking beautifully, balanced, mouth-coating and very tasty. Now, you could actually focus on its fine concentration, structure, acidity and the moderate tension on the finish. In most ways, it was like a completely different wine. It had certainly gone from mediocre to gorgeous, with a long, impressive finish. The longer it was open, the better it showed. It has the complexity of flavor to make a good pairing, too, for foods with stronger flavors. Then, the wood balances the food very well. A food pairing will be its highest and best use. Try it with some linguini with clam sauce, for instance. Drink the Thalassitis (oddly, not here yet) on its own, if you wish, but the Wild Ferment needs food. Also, try this at the end of the summer and it should be in better form than when I saw it in late April. Robert Parker. The Wine Advocate. 90/100