Posted by: Andy Kelly
I recently returned from a holiday in Zante and whilst there I was fortunate to have visited Grampsas Winery, one of only a handful of wineries on the island.
The winery itself was set in beautiful surroundings and our host, Yiannis, was the icing on the cake of what was an outstanding experience. See our Grampsas Winery profile.
As part of our tasting, we tried a number of reds, whites and even a rose that was half decent! The standouts from the list that we tried were Goustolidi V, covered elsewhere on our website and Root of the Mountain 2015. Yiannis had told me that this was his favourite because of the dark fruits and chocolate taste he got whenever he drank it. It was a bold luscious red that I ended up drinking a few glasses of and I liked it so much I brought a bottle back with me.
The wine is made up of 100% Avgoustiatis which is similar to Mavrodaphne which grows in abundance on the Greek mainland. The 2018 vintage also recently received gold at the Berliner wine awards so you know you’ll be getting quality.
I’ve been getting a bit antsy as the lockdown has progressed so I got to the weekend and thought “sod it, I’m opening a cracker” and decided to open the Root of the Mountain.
Okay, so I’m going to start with a little lesson. Always make sure you’re drinking your wine from a clean glass that has been dried properly. That wasn’t the case when I poured my first glass of this and I just couldn’t get aromas of anything. Thankfully I knew I’d made a schoolboy error upon sniffing the cork and the wine in the decanter so I quickly changed glasses!
On the nose, I got aromas of black cherry with plenty of wood and a hint of smoke. Black fruits dominated the palate with good notes of black cherry and blackberry too. There was the slightest hint of oak and as the wine went down there was a delicate peppery spice left on the tongue after that nice long finish. It was quite acidic but it had soft, luscious tannins that made the wine very moreish.
I felt like I was drinking the best of what the southern Rhone had to offer instead of a grape I’d never heard of as it was so good.
The wine doesn’t age too well so you want to be drinking this up to 5 years after the vintage stated on the bottle and if you pair this with any red meat or poultry then you’re on to a winner.
Along with Lafon Rochet, reviewed elsewhere on this site, Root of the mountain ticked every single box for me. they provided an outstanding tour experience with a friendly guide, some outstanding wines to taste set amongst beautiful surroundings in perfect weather. We brought home 3 of their wines and every single one has been fantastic though Root of the Mountain has been the very best for me.
Thankfully, wines from Grampsas can be purchased and shipped to the UK so I'm looking forward to tucking into some more of their wines before I head back to their fabulous winery.