Artemis Karamolegos – Santorini
Artemis Karamolegos is one of the most dynamic wineries on the unique island of Santorini. Led by his grandfather, who started making wine and cultivating vines as a hobby in the 1950s, Artemis founded the winery in 2004. Local variety Assyrtiko, which has become the flag bearer for quality wine across the whole of Greece, is at the heart of the estate’s production. They own just over 3ha of vineyards (some over 100 years old) from many of the best villages to grow Assyrtiko – Pyrgos, Megalorchori, Exo Gonia, Akrotiri and Fira. Long term leases on another 5ha allows them to manage and work with an amazing range of aspects, altitudes and local varieties. Their hugely talented young winemaker Lefteris Anagnostou crafts a small range of cuvées ranging from single vineyard wines though to multi-site blends using modern and ancient techniques.
The Santorini is their classic Assyrtiko blend, sourced from different vineyards around the island. It shows jasmine and herbal mint notes derived from the percentage of Athiri-Aidani grapes giving it a complex, elegant and vivid palate. The eponymous grapes for the Aidana are harvested at different times to combine fresh acidity with aromatic weight, mature fruits like nectarine, lychee and kumquat coming first with hints of minerality and green citrus fruits in the background. The 34 is a lees aged Assyrtiko with characteristic stony minerality (salty and flinty notes) followed by fruity (peach, pear) and herbal (tea, chamomile) hints. The release of the Nykteri is delayed in order to bring out the complexity and the special character (the oiliness and long salty aftertaste) that Assyrtiko provides during its evolution. The Mystirio is a single vineyard, old vine Assyrtiko, mineral notes and fruity hints of pear and bergamot abounding, the structured and generous mouthfeel with firm tannins balancing the richness and volume of the wine. The Pyritis is the pinnacle of this estate, Assyrtiko sourced form 120 year old vines. Pure flinty minerality with notes of matured stone-fruits lead to a palate of considerable depth and genuine concentration.