It's got a long, storied history, but Greek wines still deserve more attention from today's curious drinker. Explore islands, indigenous grapes, and must-try reds. Wines discussed: @3:27 Gaia Wines 2017 Wild Ferment Assyrtiko (Santorini) @11:40 Nasiakos 2016 Mantinia Moschofilero (Mantinia) @16:16 Alpha Estate 2015 Hedgehog Vineyard Xinomavro (Amyndeon) Transcript: Welcome to Wine Enthusiast's What We're Tasting Podcast. I'm your host, Jameson Fink. Join me as we discuss three fantastic wines and why each one belongs in your glass. This episode, we're looking at wines from Greece with Executive Editor Susan Kostrzewa, who covers and reviews wine from the region. What We're Tasting is sponsored by Vivino. With the largest online inventory, Vivino finds the right wine every time, including wines from Greece. Download Vivino to discover and buy your favorites, and stock up at Vivino.com/wineenthusiast. Greek wines aren't getting enough due, and I think as modern wine drinkers we should be connected to a country that has such an amazing past, so Sue, thank you for being on the show. Susan Kostrzewa: Thanks for having me. Jameson Fink: Are Greek wines just not getting enough due? Why aren't they more well known, or are they better known than I think they are? Susan Kostrzewa: I don't think they're well known enough. I love Greek wines, and they've been making wine for 4,000 years. So you'd think with all that time we would have found out about them by now. But I think part of the issue is a pretty simple one. It's kind of surprising, I guess, in a way that this could hold something back, but the names. The names of the grapes, the names of the producers, they're in Greek. Jameson Fink: Yeah, right. Susan Kostrzewa: You know, it's all Greek to you and me. But it honestly, I think, for so many years the producers of Greek wines were labeling all of the wines in Greek. So only really Greeks in the US, so Greek restaurants, Greek people, Greek immigrants were drinking that wine. They were the ones who could read the labels. It scared everybody off, so that was one very simple thing. I think that kind of deterred regular wine drinkers from getting into it. Then you also have the whole retsina thing, which for many years in the US, retsina, a not very well-made retsina was what was being exported into the country. So a lot of people have literal and figurative hangovers from the retsina days. There's great retsina being made now, and I'd love to talk to you about that, but I think there's still, I run into a lot of people who when I say I'm rating and reviewing Greek wine, I love the Greek wines, and were like, "Oh, I hate retsina." It's the first thing they go to, so I think there have been some starts and stops along the way that have deterred people who should know about it from knowing about it. And thank God, like the psalms are the ones who started the trend in the US again. They were the ones tasting it. They were like, "This is amazing. You should know about it," and sort of gained momentum from there. Jameson Fink: Yeah. I mean, I'll be guilty as charged. I mean, I remember when I was a buyer at a grocery store, we had like one Greek wine. It was a retsina, and of course I became more knowledgeable after that. I remember actually when I was still working in there, some new wines were coming into the marketplace, and they were exciting and interesting indigenous grapes, but it's sort of like, I don't know if it's maybe like Chianti with the fiasco, the straw kind of bottle that people still associate like a whole region or a country painted with that kind of broad stroke. But I don't know, nowadays, and I think you mentioned what? Sommeliers, and of course wine buyers all over are doing with Greek wines as sort of championing them and getting them in front of people, which I think is the biggest reason. So the first wine I want to talk about is one this definitely been a darling of the sommelier scene, and...
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