More info on Amyndeon, West Macedonia.
Alpha (= α ) is the first letter of the Greek alphabet. The choice of this name came from the initial letter of Amyndeon, the geographical location of the estate’s vineyards and additionally declares a quality term in the Greek argo.
Alpha represents the “new beginning”, the “birth” of a new era in the world of Greek wine. Makis Mavridis, a third generation skilled grapegrower, and Angelos Iatridis, the winemaker, educated in Bordeaux, trained in France, Italy and Greece and ”good father” to many international well known Greek wines, planted a 65ha vineyard in the Amyndeon region in the late 1990’s.
The creation of a privately owned estate vineyard was an enormous and pioneering investment at the time, which signalled the birth of pilot-structured vinicultural exploitation. Our on-going mission is to make wines that bring out the true characteristics of the region they originate from, wines that can reveal the characteristics of the soil, the climate and the typicity of the grape varieties they are made from.
Vineyard’s “TERROIR” is at the heart of the ALPHA ESTATE winemaking philosophy.
The privately owned vineyard of the estate is situated on a plateau at an altitude of 620-710 m with a northwest exposure, covering a total area of 65 ha. The local climate is characterized by cold winters with sufficient rainfall and snow which provide the vines with the necessary water supplies to endure the relatively dry summer. Additionally, two neighboring lakes contribute to the existence of a mild semi-continental climate, favoring the cultivation of foreign and indigenous, red and white grape varieties.
The sandy-clay texture of the soil, assuring an ideal drainage of the rain water, the favorable climatic conditions during maturation and harvest periods and finally the appropriate viticultural practices contribute to a complete fruit ripening thus offering the possibility of producing wines of exquisite quality and rich aromas. The density of plantation is 3900 vines/ha and the yields do not exceed 4000 kg of grapes per hectare (250hl/ha). In order to avoid extreme water deficits during summer, “root zone drying irrigation” is applied to assure the optimum conditions for the maturation of grapes.
As the vines became old enough (green harvest procedure was applied on the third and forth year of each parcelle-variety) the grapes from the vineyard were used exclusively for the core blend of a typical Vin de Garde of VQPRD Amyndeon (ALPHA XINOMAVRO). Today, a popular blend of Syrah/Merlot with ungrafted Xinomavro is the estate’s red flagship (ALPHA ESTATE RED), while a classic barrel fermented Sauvignon Blanc (ALPHA ESTATE WHITE) and several other wines of limited production (ALPHA SYRAH, ALPHA PINOT NOIR, ALPHA ONE,ΩMEGA) complete the estate’s varietal portfolio. The wedding of an ancient local variety with a noble international one arose not only by the demands of modern markets, but also by the spirit of progress that distinguishes Angelos Iatridis’ winemaking.
Alpha Estate’s vineyard consists of the following varieties: Sauvignon Blanc, Gewürztraminer, Malagouzia, Pinot Noir, Negro Amaro, Montepulciano, Tannat, Barbera, Mavrodaphne, Merlot, Syrah and Xinomavro.
Please see HERE the official Alpha Estate website.
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100% Sauvignon blanc.
Regional: Venus clams. World: charcuterie, crustaceans, flatfish, goat’s cheese, sushi.
Greenish clear yellow. Light viscosity, distinct aroma’s of apple, lemon, and grapefruit. Fine flavors of grapefruit, lime, some minerality, eucalyptus and fine acetic acid. Pleasantly light with a juicy texture. Medium lenght. Well made: a winner!
2011 Alpha Estate Axia Malagousia, PGI Florina, 86 points.
Shrimp, roe & dolmades. World: aperitive, sushi, Asian food, foie gras, rillettes, cheese salads.
Greenish gold colored. Medium viscosity. Elegant fragrances of ripe pineapple, melon, peach and apricot. Voluptuous flavors of manderine, lychee and apricot. Light/Medium bodied. Smooth, fleahy texture. Lasting finish.
2007 Alpha Estate Axia red, PGI Florina, 87 points.
50% Xinomavro / 50% Syrah,
Regional: Pistachio rack of Lamb. World: game (large & small), Kleftiko, spicy meat stews, hearty cheeses.
Brilliant dark purple. Good density. Spicy aroma’s like vanilla, clove and pepper mingle well with soft ripe fruit like blackberry and prune. Balanced and complex flavors combining soft acidity with plum, blackberry, black currant (cassis), high toast, clove, and black olive. Medium/full bodied. Pronounced round texture. Impressive finish.
2008 Alpha Estate Hedgehog, PDO Amyndion, 83 points.
Regional: Macedonian sausages. World: roast lamb, kokoretsi, spicy sausages, matured cheeses.
Bright purple. Good density. Bold aroma’s of blackberry, red currant, cherry, mediumt toast, and a hint of black pepper. Balanced flavors like blackberry, red currant, dried tomatoes, black olive, and light toast. Refreshing acidity. Medium/full bodied. Mellow, round texture. Some good lenght.
2007 Alpha Estate Red Syrah Xinomavro Merlot, PGI Florina, 86 points.
60% Syrah, 20% Xinomavro, 20% Merlot.
Regional: Rib-eye/mushrooms. World: venison, quail, pheasant, prime red meat, spicy stews, rich cheeses.
Dark ruby with brown edges. Medium density. Concentrated harmonious aroma’s of blackberry, red currant, prune, toast, vanilla, black pepper, clove, and black olive. Soft acidity. Ripened flavors like blackberry, red currant, forest floor, medium toast, vanilla, and black pepper. Medium/full bodied. Smooth overall texture. Pleasant medium finish. Drink now.
2008 Alpha Estate Reserve Xinomavro, PDO Amyndeon, 91 points.
Regional: Slow Roast Greek lamb. World: dove’s breast, saddle of hare & lamb, veal liver, prime red meat.
Deep ruby. Concentrated density. Amazing aroma’s of sweetish ripe plum, prune and blueberry. Soft vanilla tones. Elegant acidity combining ripe currant, plum and cherry flavors, sundried tomatoes, black olive and tobacco leaf. Impressive finish leaves you with a wish for more!. Make sure to decant hours ahead……
85% Gewurztraminer, 15% Malagousia
Yellow gold. Nice density. Pleasant notes of peach, apricot, cantaloupe, light toast, and some honey. Modest flavors of pear, peach, some apricot, vanilla, spice and honey. Medium/full bodied. Round and silky texture. With a medium finish this wine is rather overpriced.