Douloufakis 2018 Dafnios LiatikoRegular price £15.95
Crete is home to some of the most exciting wines in Greece, and a whole host of fascinating indigenous grape varieties. Douloufakis make some superb wines, including this red from the Liatiko grape. It has wonderful complexity, with earthy tones lying over fresh red fruit.
Light to mid ruby. Looks more mature than 2018 but this is typical for Liatiko colour. Like the colour, the aroma is typically more mature than you might expect for a 2018: leathery red fruits, some dried cherry but also a gentle herbaceous freshness. On the palate, this is fresh but also more meaty/savoury, with umami flavours that you would normally get from an older wine but which are, I think, typical at a younger age in Liatiko. Tannins are dry, slightly grainy and firm. Absolutely needs food now but should have a long life ahead. If you are tired of Cabernet, Merlot or Syrah, try this slightly rustic but characterful wine. Even though Liatiko often seems to age quite quickly initially in terms of colour and flavour (if not tannin), it often ages very well in bottle. This and the Dafnios Vidiano would make a great starting pair if you have not yet ventured into Cretan wines.
16+ pointsJulia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, 14/03/2021