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The Yiaskouris Winery in Cyprus April 29, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Wine And Spirits.

Some fine wines are produced by one of Cyprus’ most modern small wineries

Pachna is a village in the Limassol district perched at an altitude of 750 meters on the southern slopes of the Troodos mountains. It enjoys an ideal climate for vine cultivation and has long been the heartland of the Cypriot Krasohoria, wine villages. Yiaskouris and Monolithos are the two local wineries, and both have created a reputation for quality using mainly local grape varieties.

Yiaskouris winery has also successfully mastered the imported grape variety of Shiraz. Christos and Doros Yiaskouris are the dynamic duo behind the winery’s success that bares their family name. With Georgia, Christos’ wife equipped with a post-graduate degree in chemistry, they make up an admirable team. Christos is a US university graduate in electrical engineering and is in full control of the mechanical and electrical equipment of the winery. The business side is looked after by Doros, also a US university graduate, in business management.

This is a trinity that is envied by many in the field and the dynamic trio now owns one of the best equipped wineries on the island. While touring the winery, you can’t miss the modern vacuum press, stainless steel vats and perfectly-kept cellars. However, the secret of the Yiaskouris brothers’ success is based on the fact that they own many of their vineyards, a much higher number than the average ownership by small, independent wineries on the island. In a winery with its own vineyards it would be possible to produce high-quality wine that would not vary, significantly, from year to year. And, plans are afoot to expand with more ownership of selected vineyards. They rightly believe that you cannot make a great wine from grapes of unknown and unspecified origin, bought from all over the place.

The Yiaskouris brothers have also given serious consideration to Shiraz as an imported variety worth giving extra attention. The potential of this grape in Cyprus was evident at a recent tasting of Yiaskouris wines. The Shiraz grape, the main grape used for most Rhone wines, seems to have adapted to the dry and hot climate of the island and the tasting proved that the Yiaskouris brothers are among the island’s top wine producers, capable of producing exceptional reds.

2005 Yiaskouris Dry White, D. Yiaskouris Winery, Lemesos Region, Alcohol Volume 11.5% > While opening the bottle, I noticed that this Xinisteri varietal was of 2005 vintage. I have always believed that Xinisteri cannot keep long but, curious by nature, I decided to taste it. The result was a pleasant surprise. This is the only white wine produced by the winery and is vinified exclusively from Xinisteri. The typicity of the grape is evident both on the nose and on the palate. Clear, straw yellow colour of medium intensity, it has aromas of gallant apples, pear, lemon blossoms and freshly cut grass. Pleasantly balanced in the mouth with crispy acidity, grapefruit, light bodied and a Xinisteri finish of medium intensity. Drink now at 9 degrC with marinated, grilled chicken, village salad or tomato, goats cheese and citrus fruit based salads, fried Mediterranean fish and seafood.

2003 Yiaskouris Dry Red, D. Yiaskouris Winery, Lemesos Region, Alcohol Volume 13% > A satisfying blend of Carignan and Grenache. It has a bright ruby red colour, damson, black cherry and plum with some exotic spice aromas and very sensuous earthy tones at the back stage. On the palate, it maintains that brooding, dark, solidly packed, warm, fruit quality. Light to medium, dry with supple tannin and crisp acidity. An everyday red, delicious to drink at 16-17 degrC with pork roasted in balsamic vinegar or grilled veal chops with herby sauces.

2002 Pakhna Wines Shiraz, Cava Yiaskouri, Limassol Region, Alcohol Volume 12.5% > Traditionally, this ordinary Shiraz has been the one of the best reds in Cyprus. Deep red with a purple rim, aromas of black fruit, cherry and anise, and a touch of Asian spice are evident on the nose. Herbal plants, medium bodied, balanced tannin, slightly high in acidity and concentrated fruit. Drink now at 17 degrC with grilled veal chop and Asian spice or stewed meats.

2001 Pakhna Wines, Shiraz, Oaked aged, Cava Yiaskouri, Limassol Region, Alcohol Volume 12.5% > 2002 and 2003 vintages were exported but the 2001 vintage has a deep crimson red colour. The nose reminds of wild fruit and hot earthiness, plum, black cherry, mulberry and hints of roasted herbs. Elements of pepper and spice follow. The sip is concentrated with ripe fruit, black pepper, liquorice, medium body with harmonious tannins and oak. Good, long aftertaste with some ripe fruit and dusted cocoa. Syrah pairs well with heavy foods. Oaked Syrah is awesome with barbequed food. Spicy foods are also pair well with spicy Shiraz, at 17 degrC. This is one of the best matured Cyprus wines that I have tested.

The D. Yiaskouris Winery Ltd, 6 Kyriakou Matsi Street, Pachna, Limassol, Cyprus, tel 25 942470, 25 374082, 99 633730, fax 25 351662.

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