2021 Oenops Wines 'APLA' White Wine, Drama, Greece (750ml)

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Nikos Karatzas cut his teeth at Ktima Pavlidis, a rising star winery in Drama, Greece’s relatively youthful wine-producing region. Located in northeastern Greece at the base of the mountains that separate Macedonia from Bulgaria, Drama has a history of winemaking that dates back to antiquity, although the region did not emerge onto the modern winemaking scene until the 1980s. Nikos launched Oenops, (meaning ‘wine face’), in 2015 and partners with a variety of growers throughout the region to source high quality grapes and produce limited quantities of “clean wines with character and harmony that express the vineyard from which they came.” He is particularly interested in utilizing old vines and native Greek varietals such as Xinomavro, Limniona, Mavroudi, and Vidiano, and strives to retain purity and “express varietal character with as much validity as I possibly can.” Hence, Nikos forgoes the use of new oak during maturation and instead, he employs a combination of stainless steel, amphora and used, neutral oak vessels.

The 2021 APLA bottling is a secret blend of three famous Greek grape varieties: Malagousia, Assyrtiko and Roditis. The grapes were carefully hand-sorted before being pressed. Each parcel was fermented separately in a combination of INOX tanks and amphorae, and saw three months aging on the fine lees before blending and bottling. The result is a wine that succeeds in artfully combining both maturity and freshness.

Pale yellow with golden flashes. Tropical fruit, citrus and chalk on the nose. The palate is bright with flavors of lemon, lime zest, Asian pear, underripe yellow peach, nectarine and apricot pit. Light yet textural, with healthy acidity, a solid mineral component and a long fruity finish.

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