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jeremy johnson

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WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by jeremy johnson » Thu Sep 07, 2006 3:04 am

So I just tried (after being excited by Paul B's Greek wine topic) the 2003 Boutari Naoussa (Xinomavro's the grape)...here are my notes:

Nose was caramel, malt and hops if you can believe it, very Beer-ish... palate was initially, extreeeaaaaamly tight. Dry, unforgiving, tannic. My friend and I decided to wait for more than twenty minutes or so before our second sip...after waiting, the nose started to reveal hints of vanilla and menthol, and upon tasting a very nice blend of herbs, menthol, and anise crept though what felt like a dense mist obscuring everything that was actually there. A little while longer and the fruit started to come through, plums and cherries, with a bit of leather. This wine was WAY too young, but had many layers that I think just needed time to organize themselves....I'm going to buy 3 more bottles and check every year or two. A wine with a lot of potential, but get an older vintage or experiment. Perhaps a different maker or an older riserva will make all the difference...
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Rahsaan

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Re: WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by Rahsaan » Thu Sep 07, 2006 4:37 am

Perhaps a different maker or an older riserva will make all the difference


I'm no expert, but from what I understand Boutari is one of the largest wine conglomerates in Greece, and in fact you might enjoy an artisanal producer like Kir Yianni a bit more.
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Jenise

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Re: WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by Jenise » Thu Sep 07, 2006 7:54 am

Rahsaan, of course we agree on the Kir Yianni, but at the tasting where I had the KY? My second place wine was the Boutari, albeit an older vintage than Jeremy's. It was more simple than complex, but it merited attention for like the KY having a certain pinot/nebbiolo-ishness, and also for the leathery character that Jeremy mentions and a just-$12 price tag. It seemed like the kind of wine your Greek friend's uncle might make. Easy but good.
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jeremy johnson

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Re: WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by jeremy johnson » Thu Sep 07, 2006 11:24 am

I could see that...this wine seemed to have a lot of slight hints of stuff going on...I think it would have sussed itself out better in time, with some of it fading away and other characteristics growing stronger. I don't think that it would remain that layered a wine with additional ageing, and while it was very nebbiolo-ish both in color and characteristics, it lacked that chewy-ness that a good nebb seems to have.
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Paul B.

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Re: WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by Paul B. » Thu Sep 07, 2006 11:54 am

Many thanks for the note, Jeremy. Now I am extremely eager to get some. The nose doesn't sound very appealing as you describe it initially, but obviously it needs some major decanting to come into its own. I can see myself enjoying those fierce tannins.

Thanks again.
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jeremy johnson

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Re: WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by jeremy johnson » Thu Sep 07, 2006 12:01 pm

yeah, it really isn't at first...my friend and I just found ourselves saying "It smells like Beer?!" at first, but it did open up nicely and the nose did improve.
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Dave Moritz

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Re: WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by Dave Moritz » Thu Sep 07, 2006 1:22 pm

Greetings All:

Pardon me for pulling this thread in a slightly different direction, but I couldn't help myself! I picked up several bottles of Ktima Kir Yianni 1997 Ramnista (also the xinomavro variety) a few years ago and drank through all but three of them. My verdict: this wine needs more time in cellar, and that is exactly the treatment the remaining three will receive.

Now regarding the others. This wine went through a most fascinating evolution in bottle over a two-year period. I didn't take notes, but I recall the first bottle reminding me of a warm-year California Cab. The second and third bottles were much more structured by acids with the weight, balance and texture of a Barolo (delightful, if not very friendly to the casual wine drinker). Finally the last bottle seemed to lose the intergration of flavors that the pervious specimens displayed in coming across as a bit chunky, but also gaining considerable weight. However and unless I miss my guess, I suspect that this wine's flavors will integrate and emerge as something entirely different (again) in the future.

So there you have it (as strange as it might seem!).

Dave Mo
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Clinton Macsherry

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Re: WTN: Xinomavro al la Paul B's suggestion....

by Clinton Macsherry » Thu Sep 07, 2006 1:45 pm

I agree with Jenise that Boutari, industrial though it may be, produces some better than decent wines at attractive prices. I've really enjoyed the Naoussa a lot in the past (Greek-American friends serve it with herbed grilled beef drizzed with lemon). Just last week I for the first time tried the Kretikos--named for Crete, I think; not sure on the grapes. Lighter and red-fruitier than Naoussa, with flavors somewhat reminiscent of New World Pinot Noir.
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