A few quick thoughts on the 2014 Hatzidakis Santorini.
Hatzidakis Wines was founded in 1997 when Haridimos Hatzidakis, a former winemaker at Boutari Winery, started his winery outside the village of Pyrgos. Hatzidakis took over care of 10 acres of 100+ year old vines owned by a nearby convent and replanted a vineyard that was abandoned after an earthquake in 1956.
Hatzidakis’ approach is to emphasize the minerality of native Santorini grape varieties that thrive in the volcanic soils of the island. The vines are farmed organically and only native wild yeast is used for fermentation.
While Hatzidakis was the first winery in Santorini to release a vineyard-designated Assyritko, the 2014 Hatzidakis Santorini is 100% Assyritko blended from vineyards in the villages of Akrotiri, Megalochori, Pyrgoas and Vourvoulos. The wine is kept on the lees for 40 days to enhance mouthfeel.
Jancis Robinson notes in Wine Grapes, that Assyrtiko likely originated on Santorini and today accounts for around 70% of the island’s vineyards. Its extensive plantings in Santorini makes the variety the third most widely planted white grape in all of Greece–behind only Savatiano and Roditis.
Unfortunately, Haridimos Hatzidakis recently passed away in August of 2017 with his daughter, Stella, taking over the winery.
Medium-plus intensity nose. A mix of citrus and herbal notes like lemon verbena with some hay straw.
On the palate, those citrus notes carry through and add a pithy component that compliments the medium bodied weight. The racy minerality of Assyritko is quite present and mouthwatering with the high acidity. It’s balanced well with the body and subtle creaminess of the wine. It’s not creamy like a Chardonnay but the weight is not that dissimilar from a Pinot blanc.
The Hatzidakis Santorini is drinking absolutely scrumptious right now. The savory minerality compliments the layers of citrus fruit and herbal notes which makes it a wonderful accompaniment to food.
The wine probably still has another 2-3 years of life before waning and at $20 is well worth picking up a few bottles.